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According to one industry group official, the exclusion could hurt biotech companies in the state working on renewable fuels because the research and development of new fuels “is basically cut out of Massachusetts' own law."

Synthetic Genomics will develop new algae and scale-up technologies for the oil company's R&D programs.

Around the Regions: May 1, 2009

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Silicon Valley remained the top US cluster with $210 million in first-quarter venture capital, down a little over 16 percent from the $251 million racked up a year earlier. New England's $149 million in biopharma VC marked a nearly 32 percent fall-off.

Verdezyne will optimize selected genes that encode industrial enzymes for Novozymes.

The New Zealand firm, which is "evaluating all options," has also been unable to secure the more than $1 million it is owed for selling its stake in a biofuels shop, or to find funding from a government technology-investment group.

Art Torres, Duane Roth, John Garamendi, John Chiang, Bill Lockyer, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sherry Lansing, Claire Pomeroy, Norris Tolson, Gov. Bev Perdue, Hilda Pinnix-Ragland, W. Steven Burke, Jim Hunt, Virginia Walker, Danny Ludeman, Joe Imbs, William Rolleston, Andreas Luxenburger

The public-private BioBusiness Alliance of Minnesota said the state should develop clusters in animal health, food, biofuel/renewable energy, and renewable materials capable of competing with other states.

Georgia Biotech Tort-Shield Legislation, Maryland Biotechnology Tax Credits, North Carolina Council for Entrepreneurial Development-Biotech 2009, Louisiana 2007 Science Education Act, Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology, Pittsburgh Life Sciences Greenhouse, Singapore Pharmaceutical Exports

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23andMe and Airbnb have partnered to offer "heritage travel," according to Venture Beat.

China may include regulations protecting genes and embryos in its update of its civil code, Nature News reports.

In Nature this week: exome sequence analysis of individuals with type 2 diabetes, genomic prediction of maize yield across environments, and more.

NPR reports on efforts to engineer bacteriophages to destroy antibiotic-resistance bacteria.