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Marijn Dekkers, David Harvey, Michael Hogan, David Julien, Jai Nagarkatti, Franklin Wicks, Waters, Bruker, P&G Pharma, Stratagene, Bio-Rad, CSIRO, CombiMatrix, Array Genomics


Thermo Electron is paying chief executive Marijn Dekkers a bonus of more than $1.3 million, according to regulatory filings last week. Dekkers' 2006 salary is just over $1 million, the filing said.

Sigma-Aldrich has awarded several of its executives cash bonuses for the year ended Dec. 31, 2006. David Harvey, chairman of the company, received $584,249; CFO Michael Hogan received $260,150; David Julien, president, research specialties, was awarded $187,550; Jai Nagarkatti, president and CEO, was awarded $341,220; and Franklin Wicks, president of the SAFC unit, received $193,600.

BioCommerce Briefs

Waters to Integrate Acquity UPLC with Bruker Mass Spec, NMR Products

Three days after disclosing that it will integrate its Acquity Ultra Performance Liquid Chromatography product with Thermo Electron's mass spectrometers, Waters last week said it will also integrate the Acquity with Bruker Daltonics' mass spec instruments and nuclear magnetic resonance products.

The deal will support Waters' Acquity system in Bruker's HyStar software, "thus unifying control and results management to seamlessly combine these complementary technologies," Waters said in a statement.

Financial details of the alliance were not disclosed.

Waters' alliance with Thermo follows a similar earlier collaboration between the firms on HPLC/MS, but Gene Cassis, Waters' vice president of investor relations, said the firms are betting that the enhancements offered by UPLC will entice additional customers (see BioCommerce Week 3/8/2006).

Waters said that it expects to sign similar agreements with other mass spec instrument manufacturers this year.

P&G Pharma, Scuttling Internal Discovery, Will End Some Existing Vendor Contracts

Procter & Gamble Pharmaceuticals will retain some of its genomic-related alliances and end others after the company late last month decided to shutter its internal drug-discovery program.

"We are currently evaluating all of our discovery contracts," P&G spokesperson Tom Milliken said in an email message to BioCommerce Week sister publication GenomeWeb News today. "Some of them will remain open as originally planned, and others will not, depending upon the value that each adds to our new strategy." P&GP spokeswoman Paula Koenigs said the company's new strategy involves moving out of drug discovery and into external licensing agreements and drug acquisitions.

P&GP has many R&D collaboration with various genomic-related tool vendors. However, the company could not specify which would be affected by the closure.

The shuttered program means lost opportunities for existing collaborators, potential future allies, or past partners, such as Inpharmatica, which delivered model GPCRs last year to P&GP. The company last week said P&GP's decision closed the door for lead-optimization deals. "We could have expanded," said Vinod Mehta, senior vice president of business development at Inpharmatica. "Those opportunities in lead-optimization were affected."

Stratagene Manufacturing Facility Gets ISO Registration

Stratagene's manufacturing facility in Cedar Creek, Texas, has been awarded International Organization for Standardization 13485 registration, the company announced this week.

ISO 13485 is the international standard specific to medical device development, production, and servicing.

Stratagene's Garden Gove, Calif., and Edinbugh, Scotland, facilities have already been granted ISO 13485 registration.

Bio-Rad to Integrate Infometrix, CSIRO Technology Into Informatics System

Bio-Rad Laboratories announced this week that it will integrate Infometrix's Pirouette chemometrics technology into its KnowItAll Informatics System.

Bio-Rad, which announced the collaboration at the Pittcon 2006 conference in Orlando, Fla., said integration of the two products would enable better analysis of large collections of spectral, chromatographic, chemical, and biological data.

Terms of the alliance were not disclosed.

Bio-Rad also announced at the conference that it would integrate molecular modeling technology from Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization into the KnowItAll system.

CSIRO's molecular structure activity relationship technology uses Bayesian neural network technology to build in silico models for a wide range of end points, such as ADME/Tox properties or biological activities.

CombiMatrix, Array Genomics to Develop and Market CGH Arrays

CombiMatrix Molecular Diagnostics, a subsidiary of Acacia Research's CombiMatrix group, this week said that it has signed an agreement with Paris-based Array Genomics to co-develop and co-market a series of comparative genomic hybridization microarrays for diagnosing genetic anomalies associated with mental retardation.

CombiMatrix Molecular Diagnostics will manufacture the arrays in the US, and Array Genomics will distribute them in Europe.

The arrays are expected to begin generating revenue for both companies "within the next several weeks," CMDX said in a statement.

The array-based CGH tests will reduce the time associated with the analysis of chromosomal imbalances compared to conventional cytogenetic approaches while increasing the detection resolution, CMDX said.

Matt Watson, CEO of CMDX, said in a statement that the company will also offer molecular diagnostic testing services based on CGH and gene expression profiling at its Irvine, Calif.-based clinical laboratory, and that it will also file "a number" of its tests with the US Food and Drug Administration for approval to market them within the US as in vitro diagnostics.

MDS Sciex Revenues Fall 4 Percent in Q1

MDS last week reported that instrument sales during its fiscal first quarter declined 4 percent to $71 million from $74 million for the year-ago period.

Profits for MDS Sciex also fell to $19 million from $21 million in the first quarter of 2005, a 9.5-percent decline. The company said the decrease was "principally due to currency."

MDS said that the best-selling products in its Sciex unit were the API 5000, the 4800 MALDI/Tof/TOF, and the 3200 Qtrap. MDS Sciex shipped the first CellKey system produced at the new Singapore facility in the quarter.

Helicos BioSciences Closes $40M VC Financing Round

Helicos BioSciences has secured $40 million from its current roster of investors to help it develop its DNA sequencing technology, the company said this week.

According to Helicos, the financing was provided by Flagship Ventures, Atlas Ventures, Highland Capital, MPM Capital, and Versant Ventures. The latest funding follows an initial investment of $27 million by the same group of investors, made when the company was founded in February 2004.

The Scan

Tens of Millions Saved

The Associated Press writes that vaccines against COVID-19 saved an estimated 20 million lives in their first year.

Supersized Bacterium

NPR reports that researchers have found and characterized a bacterium that is visible to the naked eye.

Also Subvariants

Moderna says its bivalent SARS-CoV-2 vaccine leads to a strong immune response against Omicron subvariants, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Science Papers Present Gene-Edited Mouse Models of Liver Cancer, Hürthle Cell Carcinoma Analysis

In Science this week: a collection of mouse models of primary liver cancer, and more.