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The company's early access-program for its SmartChip system includes eight new university and corporate customers.

The early-access agreements provide Wafergen with an undisclosed amount of revenue, and are expected to help validate the SmartChip platform prior to its planned launch later this year.

The research provides some short-term consumables revenue for Wafergen and validates its SmartChip real-time PCR system in advance of its full commercial launch, a company executive said.

The test is expected to be available through Asuragen's clinical laboratory improvement amendments-certified lab in the second half of this year.

The University of Pittsburgh will use WaferGen's system for high-throughput gene expression studies.

The $1.4 million grant will support a collaboration to develop sub-cellular tracking and imaging software tools.

University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine researcher Bino John and colleagues reported recently that a so-called unusually small RNA — around 17 nucleotides long — can down-regulate a microRNA target, suggesting a gene-regulation role for the RNA.

GE Healthcare and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center formed Omnyx last year to improve the speed and efficiency of the diagnosis and interpretation of lab results.

The most recent suit, filed last week, alleges that the researcher misrepresented and falsified data related to prostate cancer biomarkers after Onconome sponsored "millions of dollars" of research at his University of Pittsburgh and Johns Hopkins University labs to see if the technology could lead to a clinical diagnostic test for prostate cancer.

Under the Phenotypic Drug Discovery program, researchers from academia or biotech submit candidate compounds in specific therapeutic areas for Lilly to evaluate and profile. Participating organizations retain full IP rights to the compounds, but Lilly receives first rights to negotiate a broader collaboration or licensing agreement.

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The Los Angeles Times reports that a case of the novel coronavirus making people ill in China has been reported in the US. 

A bipartisan group of senators has introduced a bill seeking increased funding for certain fields, including synthetic biology, ScienceInsider reports. 

Discover magazine writes that paleoproteomics is increasing being used in archaeology, paleoanthropology, and paleontology, including a recent study of a 6,000-year-old ring. 

In Nucleic Acids Research this week: mutagenic effects of ultraviolet "A" light, post-transcription effects of synonymous mutations, and more.