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Alnylam, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Dharmacon, Sigma-Aldrich, Beijing Superior Chemicals and Instruments

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Alnylam CEO Adopts Plan to Sell Up to 7 Percent of His Stake in Company

Alnylam Pharmaceuticals said last week that President and CEO John Maraganore has adopted a prearranged stock trading plan under which he may sell approximately 84,000 shares of the company stock that he owns.

The shares represent approximately 7 percent of Maraganore's total ownership of Alnylam stock and stock option holdings. Alnylam said that Maraganore adopted the plan for "personal financial reasons."

According to the company, the plan was adopted pursuant to Rule 10b5-1 of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, which "allows executive officers, directors and other insiders to individually adopt pre-arranged, structured stock trading plans when they are not in possession of material non-public information. Once these plans are adopted, the officers and directors have no discretion over the timing, price or terms of any sales made pursuant to such plans," Alnylam said.


Fox Chase Cancer Center Joins Dharmacon's Global RNAi Alliance

Dharmacon, a unit of Fisher Biosciences, said this week that Philadelphia's Fox Chase Cancer Center has joined Dharmacon's Genome-Wide RNAi Global Initiative.

Fox Chase becomes the 11th member of the alliance, and the first new member since the initiative was formed in October (see RNAi News, 10/7/2005).

The alliance aims to use Dharmacon's complete siRNA library to conduct functional genomics screens of genes throughout the human genome.


Sigma-Aldrich Acquires Chinese Distributor, Expands in Shanghai

Sigma-Aldrich has increased its Shanghai operations and acquired Beijing Superior Chemicals and Instruments, the company said this week.

The acquisition of Beijing Superior — Sigma's main distributor in China with locations in Shanghai, Beijing, and Guangzhou — will increase the number of Sigma employees in China almost 10-fold, to 87. Since 75 percent of Beijing Superior's $22 million in annual revenues result from Sigma products, the acquisition will not immediately impact Sigma's sales in China.

Sigma said it has also established a Wholly Foreign Owned Enterprise, called Sigma-Aldrich (Shanghai) Trading Company; expanded its administrative offices in Shanghai; and opened a leased transit warehouse in Shanghai.

The company's expansion in China follows that of PerkinElmer, which opened a new technology center in Shanghai in late February.

"We've enjoyed spectacular growth since opening our representative office in Shanghai in 2002," said Eric Green, Sigma's vice president of international sales and operations, in a company statement. "Our ability to now provide sales, marketing, and distribution capabilities locally holds great promise for continuing that rapid growth for years to come."

The Scan

Pfizer-BioNTech Seek Full Vaccine Approval

According to the New York Times, Pfizer and BioNTech are seeking full US Food and Drug Administration approval for their SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

Viral Integration Study Critiqued

Science writes that a paper reporting that SARS-CoV-2 can occasionally integrate into the host genome is drawing criticism.

Giraffe Species Debate

The Scientist reports that a new analysis aiming to end the discussion of how many giraffe species there are has only continued it.

Science Papers Examine Factors Shaping SARS-CoV-2 Spread, Give Insight Into Bacterial Evolution

In Science this week: genomic analysis points to role of human behavior in SARS-CoV-2 spread, and more.