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Wyeth-Ayerst Allies with Gene Logic; Identifies Gene with Millennium

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RADNOR, Pa.--The Wyeth-Ayerst Research Division of American Home Products has entered into a new pharmacogenomics alliance in the field of preclinical toxicology with Gene Logic. The two companies will collaborate using Gene Logic's proprietary gene expression and bioinformatics technologies and Wyeth's compounds and toxicology expertise to develop a database of gene expression profiles predictive of different classes of drug toxicity. The alliance expands and accelerates the development of Gene Logic's Toxicology EXPRESS database.

Wyeth will also have access to Gene Logic's Flow-thru Chip technology to enable the design of DNA microarray chips based on genes selected for the Toxicology EXPRESS database and the use of such chips for screening large numbers of preclinical compounds. Gene Logic may nonexclusively license databases, Flow-thru Chips, and other products developed under the collaborative program to third-party customers. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Wyeth also announced that with Millennium Pharmaceuticals, it has identified a novel gene that regulates the activity of a key ion channel in the brain and is likely to be involved in disorders of the central nervous system. The two companies will work together to validate the gene as a target for further drug development.

The identification triggers an undisclosed milestone payment to Millennium from Wyeth.

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