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Sequenom Shares Pushed Upward in November as Decode Collapsed

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Shares of Sequenom climbed 49 percent during the month of November as the firm tries to rebound from a clinical study scandal that led to the dismissal of senior executives at the firm two months ago.

Sequenom led the 34 stocks that comprise the GenomeWeb Daily News Index, while Decode Genetics' shares dropped 88 percent as the firm filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Sequenom's shares climbed during the last third of the month, even though it posted a 20 percent drop in its third-quarter revenues earlier in the month. The firm is continuing development of its Down syndrome tests following a major setback earlier this year when it disclosed that test data had been mishandled, nullifying earlier claims about the test's efficacy.

Following a review, the firm fired President and CEO Harry Stylli, Senior VP of R&D Elizabeth Dragon, and three other unidentified employees, while other executives resigned.

While Sequenom led all gainers for the month, two other firms, Caliper Life Sciences (+18 percent) and Agilent (+17 percent), had double-digit increases for the month.

While Decode, by far, posted the largest decline in share price, four other firms — Helicos BioSciences (-20 percent), Accelr8 (-13 percent), Nanosphere (-12 percent), and Illumina (-10 percent) — had double-digit drops. Helicos reported during the month third-quarter revenues of more than $1 million and cut its net loss by nearly 40 percent, but it also said that for the time being ruled it has out a potential sale of the company in light of expected revenues through the first quarter of 2010.

Overall, the GWDN Index closed up 3 percent for November. In comparison, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Biotech Index both jumped nearly 7 percent, while the Nasdaq rose 5 percent.

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