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Ronald Lowy, Steve Lombardi, Elaine Mardis, Mark Stevenson, Arnold Levine, George Adam, William Longfield, , Robert Hayes, Theodore Martin, Carolyn Slayman, James Tobin, Tony White, Eric Olivares, Jack Leonard, Gary Zweiger, Chris Melancon, Frederick Poll

Ronald Lowy has become CEO of Helicos BioSciences, replacing Steve Lombardi, who will continue to be the company’s president and will focus on commercializing its HeliScope sequencing system. Lowy will remain on the board of directors of Helicos, which he joined in November of 2007. Previously, he was president and CEO of Fisher Biosciences, a division of Fisher Scientific.

Elaine Mardis, co-director of the Genome Center at Washington University School of Medicine, has joined Pacific Biosciences’ scientific advisory board. Mardis, who has worked at the genome center since 1993, is also an associate professor of genetics and molecular microbiology. Previously, she was a senior research scientist at BioRad Laboratories. Mardis holds a PhD in biochemistry and chemistry as well as a BS in zoology from the University of Oklahoma.

Following last month’s merger of Applied Biosystems and Invitrogen, and as previously announced, Life Technologies has appointed Mark Stevenson as president and COO. Stevenson held the same position at ABI. The company disclosed in an SEC filing that he will receive an annual salary of $650,000 with options to purchase up to $3.6 million in shares. He will also receive a cash payment of $6,798,040 related to the termination of his employment agreement with ABI.
In addition, Life Technologies appointed three former ABI directors to its board: Arnold Levine, George Adam, and William Longfield. Levine will serve as a member of the board’s science and technology committee, Adam will serve as a member of the audit committee, and Longfield will serve as a member of the compensation and organizational committee. Prior to the merger, Applied Biosystems said that six of its board members had retired: Robert Hayes; Elaine Mardis; Theodore Martin; Carolyn Slayman; James Tobin; and Tony White.

Eric Olivares has joined Pacific Biosciences as a senior scientist. He comes to PacBio from Invitrogen, where he was a senior scientist for next-gen sequencing. He is also the founder of, an online forum on next-generation sequencing technologies. Olivares holds a PhD in genetics from Stanford University and a BS in genetics from the University of California, Davis.

Jack Leonard has become vice president of technology commercialization at Febit, a new position. Leonard, who will be based in Febit’s US location in Lexington, Mass., will help commercialize the company’s Geniom platform. He will also head its US analytical services group, which offers HybSelect sequence capture services for DNA resequencing as well as microRNA and gene expression profiling services.
Leonard joins Febit from Codon Devices, where he was director of process development. Previously, he was director of genomics and molecular biology at Millipore and R&D director at US Genomics. He holds a PhD in genetics from the University of Connecticut.

Gary Zweiger has been appointed as vice president of business development at BioNanomatrix. He will focus on expanding the company’s commercial and research partnerships for its nanoscale whole genome technology platform.
Before joining BioNanomatrix, Zweiger was senior director of business development at Affymetrix, Previously, he was director of business development for Applied Biosystems' cell and molecular biology division, where he managed collaborations and business development activities for the company's PCR, DNA sequencing, RNA interference and cell biology businesses. Prior to that, he held various positions at Agilent Technologies. He has also published a book on sequencing the human genome. Zweiger holds a PhD in genetics and a BS in biological sciences from Stanford University.

Chris Melancon has become vice president for business development at Enigma Diagnostics’ new US office in San Francisco. Previously, he held senior positions at Applied Biosystems and Siebel Systems, a division of Oracle.

Frederick Pollock has been named vice president of corporate development at High Throughput Genomics. He previously held positions in management, sales, and business development at Affymetrix, and before that he spent 11 years at Amersham Pharmacia Biotech.

Mohr Davidow Ventures, an investor in Pacific Biosciences, Navigenics, and RainDance Technologies, has appointed Phyllis Whiteley as executive-in-residence and Dan Riskin as entrepreneur-in-residence. Both will help strengthen MDV's investing activities in personalized medicine and expand its reach into new areas, including health information systems, Health 2.0 businesses, and consumer-driven medicine.
Whiteley most recently worked with 5AM Ventures. Previously, she was a senior vice president at Perlegen Sciences and a vice president for strategic portfolio management at F. Hoffman La Roche. She holds a PhD in pharmacology from Washington University, St. Louis.
Riskin joins MDV from Interventional Dynamics, where he was president. Prior to that, he was in business development at Roche Diagnostics. Riskin, a surgeon by training, holds an MBA with a focus in bioinformatics from the MIT Sloan School of Management and an MD from Boston University.

The Scan

Unique Germline Variants Found Among Black Prostate Cancer Patients

Through an exome sequencing study appearing in JCO Precision Oncology, researchers have found unique pathogenic or likely pathogenic variants within a cohort of Black prostate cancer patients.

Analysis of Endogenous Parvoviral Elements Found Within Animal Genomes

Researchers at PLOS Biology have examined the coevolution of endogenous parvoviral elements and animal genomes to gain insight into using the viruses as gene therapy vectors.

Saliva Testing Can Reveal Mosaic CNVs Important in Intellectual Disability

An Australian team has compared the yield of chromosomal microarray testing of both blood and saliva samples for syndromic intellectual disability in the European Journal of Human Genetics.

Octopus Brain Complexity Linked to MicroRNA Expansions

Investigators saw microRNA gene expansions coinciding with complex brains when they analyzed certain cephalopod transcriptomes, as they report in Science Advances.