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synthetic genomics

A German-led team used carefully controlled cell cultures to develop Escherichia coli strains with 5-chlorouracil rather than the nucleotide thymine in their genome.

The firm is seeking to raise as much as $50 million in the current funding round.

According to MorphoSys, the deal will allow it to improve the success rate for new antibody drug candidate development to the point where 50 percent of new projects will reach clinical development.

The new venture also will work with Novartis on accelerating the production of influenza seed strains required for vaccine manufacturing.

The firm is developing synthetic promoters, regulatory DNA sequences created by picking out the regulatory regions in a gene, "chopping them up," and then putting them back together.

In October, Origene also purchased Marligen Biosciences, and in recent months it has forged partnerships with multiple companies, expanding its foot print in the life sciences.

The software, called GenoTHREAT, is intended to help gene synthesis companies and their customers detect the possible use of manufactured DNA as a bioterrorism agent.

In Brief This Week is a Friday column containing news items that our readers may have missed during the week.

The bioterrorism and WMD law would begin to create a safety network of rules for labs handling top-tier pathogens or chemicals, and would also take tackle synthetic genomics.

With two recent deals, Life Tech hopes to capitalize on the synthetic biology market, which is projected to grow to $2.4 billion by 2013.

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The Hill reports President Donald Trump issued an executive directing federal agencies to cut the number of board and advisory committees they have.

The New York Times reports that researchers are combining tools to more quickly develop crops to feed a growing population and cope with shifting climates.

Scientists in Canada are looking to the UK's plan to sequence children with rare conditions for inspiration, the National Post reports.

In PNAS this week: copy number changes arose during polar bear evolution, genomic and transcriptomic analysis of the Siberian hamster, and more.