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University of Cambridge, Genomics England Ltd., and Illumina Collaborate to Sequence 10,000 Whole Human Genomes for National Health Service Patients

University of Cambridge, Genomics England Ltd., and Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN) recently announced the start of a three-year project that will sequence 10,000 whole genomes of children and adults with rare genetic diseases. The project represents a pilot for Genomics England Ltd., which will provide 2,000 samples, and marks the beginning of the national endeavor to sequence 100,000 genomes in the UK National Health Service (NHS), announced recently by the Prime Minister, David Cameron.

Rancho BioSciences Partners with OmicSoft for Manual Data Curation

Rancho BioSciences, the leading manual data curation company for genomic and clinical data recently announced that they will partner with OmicSoft, an industry leading provider of enterprise solutions for next-generation sequencing and Omics data analysis, management, and visualization. Rancho BioSciences and OmicSoft will collaborate on customer driven projects to curate data in order to make it analysis ready, leveraging Rancho BioSciences global team of PhD and MD curators and OmicSoft tools and databases for biomarker data management, visualization, and analysis. OmicSoft software is powerful but easy to use, allowing the bench scientist, bioinformatician and statistician to all benefit from the same tools.

Gentris Corporation Launches Next Generation Human Transcriptome Array

Gentris Corporation (www.gentris.com), a global leader in pharmacogenomics and biorepository solutions, recently announced that it is expanding its genomic biomarker offering with the launch of Affymetrix GeneChip(R) Human Transcriptome Array (HTA) services. The GeneChip(R) HTA is a high resolution microarray for gene expression that is designed to empower next-generation expression profiling studies. The new array goes beyond gene-level expression profiling by providing the coverage and accuracy required to detect all known transcript isoforms produced by a gene.

Definiens and Advanced Cell Diagnostics Launch Software for Quantitative RNA In Situ Hybridization

Definiens AG, a healthcare company that advances personalized medicine through image analysis and digital pathology solutions, and Advanced Cell Diagnostics (ACD) of Hayward California, a leader in molecular pathology, announced recently the commercial launch of RNAscope® SpotStudio™, a custom-designed image analysis software application for ACD’s RNAscope®Assays to detect and quantify RNA biomarkers. By combining state-of-the-art image analysis and advanced in situ hybridization technologies, gene expression can be measured quantitatively at single cell resolution and interpreted by pathologists within context.

Broad Institute and Bayer Join Forces to Develop Novel Treatment Options in Cancer Therapy

The Broad Institute has entered into a strategic alliance with Bayer Healthcare in the area of oncogenomics and drug discovery. The goal of this collaboration is to jointly discover and develop therapeutic agents that selectively target cancer genome alterations over a period of five years.

“We look forward to working together with our Bayer colleagues to translate scientific discoveries into novel cancer therapeutics,” said Professor Eric Lander, President and Director of Broad Institute. “The Broad’s deep expertise and knowledge in cancer genomics, chemical biology and drug discovery perfectly complement Bayer’s decades of experience in pharmaceutical development. We are thrilled to be working with Bayer in such a visionary collaboration.”

Oncogenomics is a promising field of oncology research that identifies and characterizes genes which are associated with cancer. Cancer is caused by the accumulation of DNA mutations which lead to uncontrolled cell proliferation and tumor formation. The goal of oncogenomics research is to identify new genes which, when mutated, stimulate or lose the ability to suppress tumor cell growth. These genes may provide new insights into cancer diagnosis, prediction of clinical outcomes, and new targets for cancer therapies. Targeting individual patient tumor mutations will allow for the development of more personalized cancer treatments.

“We are excited to collaborate with such a prestigious research institute as the Broad Institute which brings together researchers from Harvard, MIT, and the Harvard hospitals,” said Professor Andreas Busch, Head of Global Drug Discovery and Member of the Executive Committee of Bayer HealthCare. “The Broad Institute’s scientists have created impressive systematic catalogues of mutational changes across different types of tumors, laying a foundation for the development of new cancer therapies and diagnostics. The alliance is another significant step underlining our engagement in the field of oncology and personalized medicine.”

As part of the collaboration, the Broad Institute will share its oncogenomic expertise. Both parties will explore their compound libraries and use their screening platforms as well as medicinal chemistry expertise to benefit joint projects. The collaboration will be based on joint decision-making and the rights to the research findings are shared equally between the partners. Joint research and joint steering committees will be established for the initiation and selection of projects, and as governance structures. Bayer will have an option for an exclusive license for therapeutic agents at preclinical development stage. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Source: Broad Institute