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Bruker, HealthLinx, Caliper, Molecular Probes, Fluidigm, Berkeley Lab, U. Glasgow, Applied Imaging, Genetix, Applera, ABI, Pronota

Bruker, HealthLinx Ink Patent Deal to Develop Biomarker
Bruker Daltonics and HealthLinx have signed a joint patent agreement to further develop biomarkers that could be candidates for complications from pregnancies, the companies announced this week.
Researchers from the two companies discovered the biomarkers as part of an ongoing collaboration. Under the agreement, Bruker and HealthLinx will file a joint PCT patent application and share costs stemming from the patent and development of the biomarkers.
In a statement, the companies said they intend to develop a blood-based diagnostic tool based on the biomarkers to detect complications during the first antenatal visit and/or subsequent pregnancy.
Bruker will have marketing rights for the test in Europe, the UK, Africa, and South America. HealthLinx will have marketing rights in Australia, New Zealand, and Asia. The two companies will have joint marketing rights in the US and Canada

Caliper, Molecular Probes Collaborate on Fluorescence Labeling Kits
Caliper Life Sciences and Molecular Probes announced this week a collaboration to develop and distribute custom fluorescence labeling kits for use in combination with Caliper’s IVIS in vivo imaging systems.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Molecular Probes is a wholly owned subsidiary of Invitrogen.
The kits, VivoFluor 680 and 750, use the Invitrogen Alexa Fluor 680 and 750 dyes and the IVIS systems’ fluorescent detection capability to identify and tag specific molecular targets such as proteins, peptides, and antibodies.
“By helping generate higher quality, more predictive data earlier in the [preclinical research] process, we believe that the addition of quantitative fluorescence capabilities to the IVIS imaging products can help accelerate drug discovery and development and significantly reduce the cost and time to market for new therapies,” said Mark Roskey, vice president of reagents and applied biology for Caliper in a statement.

NIH Funds Fluidigm and Berkeley Lab to Develop Microfluidic Chip
Fluidigm and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have received $1 million from the National Institutes of Health to develop a microfluidic chip for collection of in situ X-ray diffraction data. The chip will allow protein crystals to be screened at a synchrotron without first having to remove them from the chip.
The grant is for two years. According to a statement, the chip would allow researchers to identify the best crystals for diffraction experiment using actual X-ray data rather than relying on quantitative measures.

U. Glasgow Facility Chooses Proteus Software
The University of Glasgow’s Sir Henry Wellcome Functional Genomics Facility recently installed GenoLogics’ Proteus software for proteomics research, the company announced this week. The university plans to add GenoLogics’ Geneus software for genomics research “in the near future,” the company said in a statement.
The company will also provide SHWFGF and Rasor with “a solution for systems biology that enables a cross-science approach to genomics and proteomics research,” GenoLogics said.
Rasor is a collaboration between the Universities of Glasgow, Dundee, Edinburgh, and Strathclyde to develop proteomic methods and equipment.
“The GenoLogics solution integrates with our instruments and allows flexible workflows, which frees our researchers to focus on science rather than data management issues,” said Andrew Pitt, director of SHWFGF.

Applied Imaging Shareholders Give Go-Ahead to Merger With Genetix
Applied Imaging announced this week its shareholders have approved the sale of the company to Genetix Group. The all-cash deal is valued at $25.8 million. Genetix will pay $4.20 for each share of Applied Imaging’s common stock.
Since announcing the deal in September, Genetix has raised its original bid price of $3.03 several times in response to unsolicited bids by at least one third party to purchase Applied Imaging.
The companies did not say when the transaction is expected to close.

Applera Declares Dividend for ABI Shareholders
Applera’s board late last week declared a dividend of $.0425 per share for shareholders of Applied Biosystem’s common stock. The dividend is payable on Jan. 2 for shareholders of record as of the close of the business day on Dec. 1.

Don’t Call Us Peakadilly. It’s Pronota Now
Peakadilly said this week it is changing its name to Pronota effective immediately as part of its strategy to become “a major player in protein biomarker discovery and application.”
The name change follows the recent close of its series A financing at €14.5 million [$18.4].
Pronota also received a €1.7 million grant from the Flanders government to develop its protein biomarker discovery platform. The company is in the midst of commercializing its proprietary MASStermind technology “which allows the analysis of proteomes from biological samples, including blood, at unprecedented depth and speed” the company said in a statement.

The Scan

Pig Organ Transplants Considered

The Wall Street Journal reports that the US Food and Drug Administration may soon allow clinical trials that involve transplanting pig organs into humans.

'Poo-Bank' Proposal

Harvard Medical School researchers suggest people should bank stool samples when they are young to transplant when they later develop age-related diseases.

Spurred to Develop Again

New Scientist reports that researchers may have uncovered why about 60 percent of in vitro fertilization embryos stop developing.

Science Papers Examine Breast Milk Cell Populations, Cerebral Cortex Cellular Diversity, Micronesia Population History

In Science this week: unique cell populations found within breast milk, 100 transcriptionally distinct cell populations uncovered in the cerebral cortex, and more.