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Applera, ABI, BG Medicine, PerkinElmer, Digilab, SomaLogic, Archemix

Parent Co. Explores Spinning Out ABI as its own Publicly Traded Firm
Applera, parent company of Applied Biosystems and Celera, said this week it has retained Morgan Stanley to explore alternatives to its current tracking stock structure, including the creation of two independent, publicly traded companies to replace the two tracking stocks.
“While the tracking stock structure has facilitated the interests of both Celera and Applied Biosystems, the evolution of our businesses makes it timely to explore the potential benefits of these businesses going their separate ways,” said Tony White, chairman, president, and CEO of Applera, and interim president of ABI.
The company also announced it has increased to $1.2 billion the current authorization to repurchase shares of ABI stock. At the current share price, that represents about 20 percent of the outstanding common stock, or double the current authorization, the company said. ABI said it plans to repurchase $600 million of the shares “as soon as practicable” through a tender offer or accelerated share repurchase. The balance of the repurchases will occur over the next year to 18 months from open market purchases and privately negotiated deals.
Under a previous repurchase program, ABI had purchased more than $1 billion of company stock during the past four years. 

BG Medicine Files Intent for IPO
BG Medicine announced this week its plans to trade shares of its common stock on the Eurenext Amsterdam by NYSE Euronext. The biomarker company has filed a document with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
The offering is subject to approval by the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets. Cowen International Limited and Fortis will act as joint global coordinators and joint book-runners for the offering. Leerink Swann will act as co-manager.

PE’s Summe Adopts Plan to Sell Shares
PerkinElmer said this week that CEO and Chairman Greg Summe has adopted a prearranged plan in accordance with US Securities and Exchange Rule10b5-1 and with company policies for the exercise and share sell of 900,000 options that expire in January 2009. The shares were originally granted in January 1999.
After the sale of the shares, Summe would hold shares and options totaling 4.4 million shares.

Digilab Receives ISO Certification
Digilab Biovision said this week it has received ISO 9001:2000 certification from German environmental regulator TUV Rheinland for its peptide biomarker research services and collaborations business.
Digilab, based in Hanover, Germany, said that passing the ISO audit marked "an important milestone" for the company as it prepares its global marketing strategy for both its products and services.

SomaLogic, Archemix Expand Aptamer Development Deal
SomaLogic and Archemix said this week they have expanded their alliance to develop aptamers for therapeutic, diagnostic, and other applications.
Under terms of the agreement, Archemix receives exclusive rights to therapeutic uses of aptamers developed by SomaLogic for a limited number of targets identified by Archemix. It also has the option of providing targets to SomaLogic for the generation of aptamers.
SomaLogic receives rights to all ex vivo uses of aptamers that it did not previously hold. That includes using them for affinity purification.
Other terms of the agreement, including financial terms, were not disclosed.
SomaLogic, based in Boulder, Colo., develops protein-based diagnostics. Archemix, based in Cambridge, Mass., develops and commercializes aptamer-based therapeutics.

The Scan

Rise of BA.5

The New York Times reports that the Omicron subvariant BA.5 has become the dominant version of SARS-CoV-2 in the US.

UK Health Secretary Resigns

Sajid Javid, the UK health secretary, resigned along with Chancellor Rishi Sunak, saying they cannot work with Prime Minister Boris Johnson's government, CNN reports.

Clones From Freeze-Dried Cells

A team in Japan has cloned mice from freeze-dried skin cells, according to the Guardian.

Genome Research Papers on Craniosynostosis, Macaque Retrotransposition, More

In Genome Research this week: structural variants in craniosynostosis, LINE-1 activity in rhesus macaque brain, and more.