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Bruker BioScience, Bruker Optics, Human Proteome, Fluidigm, Health Discovery, Ciphergen, Proteome Sciences


Bruker BioScience Shareholders Approve Acquisition of Bruker Optics

Bruker BioSciences shareholders overwhelmingly voted to approve the acquisition of molecular spectroscopy company Bruker Optics at this week's annual meeting, the company said.

The $135 million deal, announced in April [PM 04-20-06], would be paid approximately 59 percent in cash and 41 percent in the company's stock.

The board of directors of Bruker Optics and the independent directors on the board of directors for Bruker BioSciences previously approved the acquisition unanimously.

The transaction is expected to close in early July.

Human Proteome Folding Project Enters Phase 2

The Human Proteome Folding Project — a collaborative effort between New York University, the Institute for Systems Biology, and the University of Washington -entered its second phase as of June 23.

The project, which initially kicked off in November 2004, runs on IBM's World Community Grid — an effort to harness spare compute cycles on millions of computers worldwide.

The goal of the project's first phase was to understand protein function by predicting the protein structures in more than 150 genomes. The second phase, called HPF2, will focus on increasing the resolution of the predictions for a "select subset" of human proteins, according to the project website.

To do so, the project participants intend to refine the Rosetta protein-prediction software in order to account for greater atomic detail.

HPF2 will focus on human-secreted proteins and key secreted pathogenic proteins, including Plasmodium, the organism that causes malaria. The project participants said that "higher resolution structure predictions for the proteins that malaria secretes will serve as bioinformatics infrastructure for researchers who are working hard around the world to understand the complex interaction between human hosts and malaria parasites."

Fluidigm Secures Series E Financing

Fluidigm said this week that it has secured series E funding from AllianceBernstein.

The company plans to use the money to develop and commercialize new applications for its proprietary integrated fluidic circuits technology, which has applications in genomics and proteomics.

Fluidigm's BioMark system uses IFCs for genetic and protein analysis, and the company said that it is developing further IFC-based systems "for rapid synthesis of radio-labeled imaging probes and preparation of nucleic acids for analysis."

Fluidigm declined to disclose the amount of the funding.

Health Discovery Sues Ciphergen, Equbits for Patent Infringement

Biomarker-discovery firm Health Discovery said today that it has filed patent infringement lawsuits against Ciphergen Biosystems and Equbits in the United States District Court in Marshall, Texas.

The lawsuit alleges that Ciphergen and Equbits have infringed three of Health Discovery's US patents covering various aspects of the company's support vector machine technology.

In the complaints, Health Discovery seeks "injunctive relief from further infringement, compensatory damages, enhanced damages, reasonable attorney's fees, prejudgment interest, and other associated costs," the company said.

Health Discovery uses its support vector machine pattern-recognition technology to discover biomarkers and biological pathways. The company said the technology also has potential applications in markets such as radiology, Internet search and spam, homeland security, financial futures, and other areas where analysis of large volumes of complex data is required.

Proteome Sciences Signs Biomarker License Agreement with Undisclosed Dx Firm

Proteome Sciences said that it has signed a license agreement with "one of the top 10 global leaders in clinical diagnostics" to use its biomarkers for the detection, diagnosis, and monitoring of stroke.

The company said that the licensee is not disclosing its identity "for competitive reasons."

The agreement follows a deal that the company disclosed in early June, in which French diagnostic firm BioMérieux agreed to test the company's stroke biomarker panel as a first step toward eventually commercializing it [PM 06-01-06].

Proteome Sciences said that it discovered and validated the biomarkers via a combination of proteomic approaches in its proprietary ProteoShop platform.

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