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Sirnaomics, NCI, InteRNA, VU University Medical Center

Sirnaomics Awarded NCI Grant to Develop Breast Cancer Therapy
Sirnaomics said this week that it has received a six-month Small Business Innovation Research grant from the National Cancer Institute to study its multi-targeted siRNA drug technology in the treatment of breast cancer.
According to the grant project’s abstract, Sirnaomics will use histidine-lysine polymer carriers with siRNA cocktails to target three specific genes — endothelial growth factor receptor, Raf-1 and mTOR. The company will then combine the regimen with Genentech’s cancer drug Avastin “to mimic a clinical regimen,” the abstract said.
The NCI grant is worth $228,000, and runs from Sept. 22 to the end of February.

InteRNA, VU University Medical Center to Collaborate on miRNA-Based Rx, Dx for Cancer
InteRNA Technologies, based in the Netherlands, said this week that it has signed a research agreement with the VU University Medical Center to develop microRNA-based diagnostics and therapeutics for cancer.
According to the company, it will use its lentiviral-based miRNA over-expression library in “multi-parametric, high-throughput screening assays to identify the biological role of individual miRNAs and novel therapeutic targets in leukemia, colon, prostate, and head and neck cancer. In addition, diagnostic miRNA profiles will be developed through next-generation sequencing, in combination with InteRNA’s proprietary small RNA bioinformatics pipeline … on diverse patient sample sets” provided by the medical center.
Specific terms of the arrangement were not disclosed.

The Scan

Back as Director

A court has reinstated Nicole Boivin as director of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Science reports.

Research, But Implementation?

Francis Collins reflects on his years as the director of the US National Institutes of Health with NPR.

For the False Negatives

The Guardian writes that the UK Health Security Agency is considering legal action against the lab that reported thousands of false negative COVID-19 test results.

Genome Biology Papers Present Epigenetics Benchmarking Resource, Genomic Architecture Maps of Peanuts, More

In Genome Biology this week: DNA methylation data for seven reference cell lines, three-dimensional genome architecture maps of peanut lines, and more.