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Emerald BioStructures, SomaLogic in DNA Aptamer Alliance

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Emerald BioStructures and SomaLogic jointly announced today that they will collaborate on the structure-based design of chemically modified DNA aptamers and small molecule therapeutics.

The alliance will combine Emerald's high-throughput X-ray crystallography expertise with SomaLogic's proprietary SOMAmer technology. The characterized DNA aptamers, called SOMAmers, will have a broad range of potential uses in the diagnostics and pharmaceutical research and development fields, the firms said.

The new alliance builds on a collaboration between the firms last year, under which they unraveled the first X-ray structure of a novel, high-value SOMAmer bound to its protein target.

"This structure allowed us to see for the first time several novel structural themes that can be achieved with SOMAmer technology, which explains the very high affinity and unique properties of our chemically modified DNA aptamers for their protein targets," Larry Gold, CEO of Boulder, Colo.-based SomaLogic said in a statement. "Our ongoing relationship with Emerald gives us the advantage of structural insight to design improved SOMAmers for both diagnostic and drug discovery applications."

Financial and other terms of the alliance were not disclosed. However, the partners said that the collaboration will support work on multiple targets.