transkingdom RNAi

Marina Biotech said this week that it has regained the rights to the use of its transkingdom RNAi technology for agriculture and veterinary applications.

CEQ508 is based on Cequent Pharmaceuticals' so-called transkingdom RNAi technology, and is designed to inhibit the oncogene beta-catenin, which is expected to prevent new polyp formation associated with the disease.

The patent applications, entitled "Compositions for Bacterial-Mediated Gene Silencing and Methods Using the Same," relate to Cequent's so-called transkingdom RNAi technology, which involves using attenuated Escherichia coli to transcribe therapeutic shRNAs.

The company said the toxicology work, which is being conducted in non-human primates, will lay the groundwork for a phase II study to begin in 2011.

"We believe [the FAP drug] is a product that the combined company could commercialize with a small specialty sales force [with] minimal sales and marketing infrastructure," MDRNA's President and CEO Michael French said this week.

The company also remains on track with its more advanced familial adenomatous polyposis drug and plans to file within the next two weeks an investigational new drug application to begin testing the therapy in humans.

An artificial intelligence-based analysis suggests a third group of ancient hominins likely interbred with human ancestors, according to Popular Mechanics.

In Science this week: reduction in bee phylogenetic diversity, and more.

The New York Times Magazine looks into paleogenomics and how it is revising what's know about human history, but also possibly ignoring lessons learned by archaeologists.

The Economist reports on Synthorx's efforts to use expanded DNA bases they generated to develop a new cancer drug.