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Health Discovery, Inpharmatica, NIDDK, Proteome Sciences, Structural Genomix, Bruker BioSciences, Ionalytics, NCI-FDA, Alpha MOS


Health Discovery Scores Two Academic Biomarker Deals

Health Discovery announced two collaborations this week for the use of its Fractal Genomics Modeling computational technology to identify biomarker patterns.

The company, based in of Savannah, Ga., first announced that it would use its FGM technology in a biomarker discovery collaboration with Stanford University for lymphatic insufficiency.

It announced that it has signed an agreement to use its fractal genomics modeling techniques to identify new patterns of biomarkers in lymphatic insufficiency and its response to therapeutic lymphangiogenesis.

The company said also that it will collaborate with researchers from the University of Miami to identify patterns of biomarkers for AIDS-related dementia. Researchers from the university will use FGM to identify the patterns. Health Discovery said that the university has granted the company joint ownership of “any product, invention, discovery, or new use arising out of or developed” during the project. According to Health Discovery, any invention discovered using its analytical tools for this project will be jointly owned with Stanford.

Inpharmatica Sells ADME to GSK

Inpharmatica said this week that it has made its ADME (absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion) technology available to GlaxoSmithKline.

Under the agreement, Inpharmatica, based in London, will apply its ADME technology to a number of GSK’s drug discovery programs in the UK and in Europe. ADME is part of Inpharmatica’s PharmaCarta chemogenomics platform that links genomic and proteomics data with chemistry data.

NIDDK Commits Another $1 Million to Proteomics/Metabolomics for Diabetes

The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases announced last week that it will commit $1 million in FY 2005 to fund projects devoted to using proteomic and metabolomic techniques to develop a diagnostic for type 2 diabetes.

Applicants can request funding for two years under the R21 mechanism, followed by three years under the R33 mechanism. The application receipt date for this PAR is July 20.

In addition to funding, the NIDDK will provide to investigators plasma from diverse individuals for use in validation experiments. Plasma from three types of patients will be provided: those who have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes; those who have impaired glucose tolerance; and those who have normal glucose tolerance.

The newest PAR is one of several that the NIDDK has issued over the past couple of years inviting investigators to apply proteomics to the study of diabetes (see PM 7-18-03, 10-17-03).

Proteome Sciences Licenses Alzheimer’s Markers from Bayer

Proteome Sciences announced this week that it has exclusively licensed a set of Alzheimer’s biomarkers from Bayer Pharmaceuticals that were discovered in patients’ CSF in collaboration with Bayer at the University Cantonal Hospital in Geneva.

The set of markers correctly identified nine of 10 Alzheimer’s patients, according to the company. Under the terms of the license, Proteome Sciences will validate the markers in CSF, serum, and other easily accessible body fluids. The company is also seeking commercialization partners for its expanded panel of Alzheimer’s markers.

SGX Partners with Serono on Kinase, Phosphatase Targets

Structural Genomix said this week that it will collaborate with Serono on developing drugs that target kinases and phosphatases.

Under the agreement, SGX will use its high-throughput crystallography approach to generate lead compounds against kinase and phosphatase targets provided by Serono. Geneva, Switzerland-based Serono will develop and commercialize drug candidates resulting from the collaboration.

In return, San Diego-based SGX will receive up to $68 million in upfront and research fees and milestone payments. In addition, it will obtain royalties from sales of drugs. SGX’s FAST approach combines screening of lead-like drug fragments using X-ray crystallography with computational design and chemical synthesis.

Bruker BioSciences Offers 15M Shares

Bruker BioSciences announced a share offering in an S-3 SEC filing this week of 15 million shares of common stock. Of these, the company itself is offering 3 million shares, while the other 12 million will come from various non-management members of the Laukien family. Frank Laukien, president and CEO of Bruker BioSciences, is not offering any of his shares, the company said. Bear Stearns and UBS Securities are the joint book-runners on the offering and SG Cowen will be co-manager.

Ionalytics Secures Distribution Agreement with ABI/Sciex

Ionalytics has signed a distribution agreement with Applied Biosystems and MDS Sciex to put its ion filtering device on the companies’ mass specs, Ottawa Business Journal said this week.

Ionalytics already signed a distribution agreement for its product — called high-Field Asymmetric waveform Ion Mobility Spectrometry, or FAIMS — with Waters last year (see PM 6-20-03). The company said it will sign a third deal with Thermo Electron this year, according to the publication.

NCI-FDA Distances itself from Correlogic’s Home brew

The NCI-FDA Clinical Proteomics program posted a fact sheet on the NIH website this week distancing the program’s efforts in ovarian cancer diagnostics from Correlogic Systems’ efforts to commercialize a home brew ovarian cancer test called OvaCheck.

“The OvaCheck test is being independently developed by Correlogic Systems in conjunction with Quest Diagnostics and LabCorp, two non-governmental, private companies. This test is unrelated to previous published work with the NCI and FDA, and utlizes different mass spectrometry instrumentation and detection methods, as well as different sample handling and processing methods,” the fact sheet said.

To read the fact sheet, click here.

Alpha MOS to Distribute Sciex’ NanoLC in Europe

Alpha MOS will distribute MDS Sciex’s NanoLC system in France, Belgium, and Luxembourg, MDS said.

The Scan

White-Tailed Deer Harbor SARS-CoV-2 Variants No Longer Infecting Humans, Study Finds

A new study in PNAS has found that white-tailed deer could act as a reservoir of SARS-CoV-2 variants no longer found among humans.

Study Points to Benefits of Local Consolidative Therapy, Targeted Treatments in Cancer Care

In JCO Precision Oncology, researchers report that local consolidative therapy combined with molecularly targeted treatments could improve survival for some lung cancer patients.

Genetic Variants That Lower LDL Cholesterol Linked to Reduced Heart Disease Risk

Rare variants in two genes that lower LDL cholesterol are also associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease, according to a new JAMA Cardiology study.

Study Links Evolution of Longevity, Social Organization in Mammals

With the help of comparative phylogenetics and transcriptomics, researchers in Nature Communications see ties between lifespan and social organization in mammals.