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The Brain Research Center, Pepscan Systems, Ludesi, Clontech, Procognia, Teva Pharmaceutical, University of Dundee

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New Canadian Peptide Center Offers Proteomic Platforms
 
The Brain Research Center in Vancouver, Canada, announced this week the opening of the Peptide Proteomic Core Facility offering custom peptide synthesis along with peptide array services. The new facility opened on Sept. 1.
 
The brain center is a partnership between Vancouver Coastal Health hospital and the faculty of medicine at the University of British Columbia. The new 50,000-square-foot facility will offer services to enable the use of proteomic platforms for those on its campus and outside, the center said in a statement.
 
The peptide array platforms include epitope mapping, peptide library screening, and peptide substitution screening assays. Equipment at the new center includes analytical HPLCs, mass spectrometers, and autospotters, the center said.
 

 
Pepscan to Use $9M to Develop Cancer Vaccines
 
Pepscan Systems announced this week it has raised €7 million [$9 million] in a second round of venture capital financing. Based in Lelystad, The Netherlands, Pepscan is a peptide-based immunotherapy company.
 
The money was raised after selling equity to Dutch investors, the company said in a statement. The lead investor was BioX Biosciences. Other investors included Lupus Ventures, PPM Oost and Technofund Flevoland.
 
The funds will be used to continue and expand development of its existing portfolio of vaccine programs in cancer and to initiate pre-clinical development of therapeutic antibodies.
 
Pepscan’s lead product is a prostate cancer vaccine being developed in partnership with Novartis. The company said it has received regulatory approval to initiate Phase II proof-of-principle study for the vaccine.
 

 
Ludesi Receives $3.4 Million in New Funding
 
Ludesi said this week it will use SEK 25 million [$3.4 million] in new funding to ramp up sales of its 2D electrophoresis gel image analysis software and to expand into other product space for protein expression analysis.
 
The funding comes from InnovationsKapital, a Swedish venture capital company, Ludesi said. Other investors included FöretagsByggarna and the Sixth AP Fund.
 

 
Clontech Makes DsRed-Monomer Available for Commercial Use
 
Clontech announced this week it is making the DsRed-Monomer fluorescent protein available to for-profit entities for research and commercial use. The protein had prior been available only to not-for-profit organizations.
 
The protein is a monomeric form of the normally tetrameric Discosoma sp. red fluorescent protein. It retains valuable red-shifted spectral properties, and because it is monomeric is useful as a fusion tag, Clontech said in a statement. 
 
Clontech, based in Mountain View, Calif., is a wholly owned subsidiary of Takara Bio, based in Shiga, Japan.
 

 
Teva Gains Access to Procognia’s Glycoanalysis Technology
 
Procognia will give Teva Pharmaceutical Industries exclusive access to its proprietary glycoanalysis technology under a collaboration announced this week.
 
Procognia will also provide services to Teva under the agreement covering two biopharmaceuticals.
 
In return, Teva will fund the costs of the collaboration and pay certain milestone and royalties to Procognia related to the technology in the development of the biopharmaceuticals.
 
Further financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
 
Procognia, based in Jerusalem, has developed a biological microarray platform for rapid analysis of biopharmaceutical glycosylation.
 

 
Funding for University of Dundee’s MRC Protein Phosphorylation Unit Nearly Doubles for 2007-2012
 
The Medical Research Council Protein Phosphorylation Unit at the University of Dundee in Scotland announced this week it has received funding of £14.9 million [$28.3 million] for 2007-2012. The funding nearly doubles the £7.5 million it received for 2002-2007.
 
The additional funding will allow the council to expand its research programs into the causes of arthritis, cancer, diabetes, hypertension, and Parkinson’s disease, and to “facilitate the development of drugs to treat these conditions in partnership with the six major pharmaceutical companies with whom we collaborate,” said Philip Cohen, director of the MRC Protein Phosphorylation Unit.

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.