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People in the News: Changes to Qiagen, NanoString Boards; DNAe Names Allen as COO

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Qiagen said this week that Detlev Riesner, a Qiagen co-founder, retired earlier this month as chairman of the company's supervisory board after having served as a member of the board since 1996 and as chairman since 2003.

Werner Brandt has been selected to become the new chairman of the supervisory board. Brandt joined the board in 2007 and was appointed the same year as chairman of the audit committee. He is also retiring in 2014 as a member of the executive board of German software firm SAP.

All other members of Qiagen's supervisory board – Stéphane Bancel, Metin Colpan, Manfred Karobath, Lawrence Rosen and Elizabeth Tallett – are being proposed for re-election to one-year terms at the company's annual general meeting.

Qiagen also said that Elaine Mardis is being proposed for election as a new member of the supervisory board at the meeting. Mardis is co-director of The Genome Institute at Washington University in St. Louis. She is a professor of medicine and genetics with an adjunct appointment in molecular microbiology, and has served in various positions at Washington University School of Medicine; as a technical consultant for several commercial high-throughput sequencing laboratories; and as a member of the Ingenuity scientific advisory board. Mardis has previously served on a number of scientific advisory boards, including Pacific Biosciences, Orion Genomics, and DNAnexus. She is a former director of Celera, Applied Biosystems, and Applera.


NanoString this week announced the appointment of Tina Nova to its board of directors. Nova will also join the board's compensation committee.

Nova co-founded Genoptix, a medical laboratory diagnostics company, and served as its president from 2000 until her retirement in April 2014. Nova also served as CEO of Genoptix and as a member of its board of directors from 2000 until Novartis acquired the company in February 2011.

Previously, Nova co-founded Nanogen and served as its chief operating officer and president from 1994 to 2000. Prior to Nanogen, Nova served as COO of Selective Genetics. She has also held various research and management positions with Ligand Pharmaceuticals and Hybritech, a former subsidiary of Lilly.


DNA Electronics said this week that it has appointed Steve Allen as chief operating officer and doubled its development team from 30 to 60 scientists and engineers.

Allen's appointment and the expansion of the development team follow a recent investment in the company by the Genting Group, which DNAe will use to develop the Genalysis diagnostic product for point-of-care applications.

Allen is a former board member and advisor to Solexa, now part of Illumina. Allen most recently served as managing director for LGC Forensics and has also worked for i2r Limited, Mettler Toledo, and PerkinElmer.

The Scan

Just Breathing

A new analysis suggests that most Mycobacterium tuberculosis is spread by aerosols from breathing, rather than by coughing, the New York Times reports.

Just Like This One

NPR reports that the World Health Organization has hired a South African biotech company to recreate mRNA vaccine for SARS-CoV-2 that is similar to the one developed by Moderna.

Slow Start

The Wall Street Journal reports that Biogen's Alzheimer's disease treatment had revenues for July through September that totaled $300,000.

Genome Research Papers on Cancer Chromatin, Splicing in the Thymus, Circular RNAs in Cancer

In Genome Research this week: analysis of bivalent chromatin sites, RBFOX splicing factors' role in thymic epithelial cells, and more.