Bio Saga Headlines

Bio Saga

Saturday, March 26, 2011

PerkinElmer Signs Agreement to Acquire CambridgeSoft Corporation

PerkinElmer, Inc., a global leader focused on the health and safety of people and the environment, today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire CambridgeSoft Corporation, and has completed the purchase of ArtusLabs, Inc. 

These acquisitions will enhance the Company's focus on knowledge management in laboratory settings by expanding its informatics and software offerings, enabling customers to rapidly access and share enterprise-wide data for faster, more informed scientific decisions.

The purchase of CambridgeSoft is expected to close in the second quarter, subject to customary closing conditions, including the expiration or termination of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act.

Do you wish to know more?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Drug Makers Report No Major Damage So Far in the Wake of Friday's Earthquake and Tsunami

Big U.S. and Japanese drug makers said they're still trying to account for all of their employees in Japan in the wake of Friday's earthquake and tsunami, but preliminary reports suggest company facilities haven't suffered major damage.
Most major drug companies have operations in Japan because it's the second-largest pharmaceutical market in the world behind the U.S., as ranked by IMS Health. Late last year, IMS projected Japanese prescription drug sales would increase 5% to 7% in 2011, to up to $100 billion.
Japanese drug maker Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. said its headquarters and main production facilities in Tokyo, Osaka and Hikari didn't appear to suffer major damage, but the company is still assessing the impact on its operations and employees throughout the country.

Pfizer Inc. - may now be headed in the opposite direction

Pfizer Inc., whose serial mega-mergers have disappointed investors, may now be headed in the opposite direction.
The New York-based drug maker may spin off various businesses, including its consumer-health and generic-drug units, in deals that result in a 40% contraction in its revenue base, Sanford C. Bernstein analyst Tim Anderson wrote in a research note Monday, after meeting with Pfizer Chief Executive Ian Read.
The mounting speculation of potential Pfizer divestitures helped lift its shares to a 52-week high Monday, recently trading up nearly 2% at $19.82.
"Investors are desperate to see pharmaceutical companies take bold try and break the cycle of underperformance," Anderson said. He added that Read and Pfizer's board "appear eager to do the same and dismantling the business will accomplish that goal."
Pfizer spokeswoman Joan Campion said Monday, "As we previously stated on Feb. 1, we're conducting a portfolio review in 2011, and the review encompasses all of our businesses." She declined to say whether Anderson's predictions were on the mark.
Hints of Pfizer asset sales have been emerging over the past six months. In October, Pfizer said it was reviewing options including a divestiture for its Capsugel unit, which manufactures drug dosage forms.
The talk seemed to accelerate after Read replaced Jeffrey Kindler as CEO in December. In February, Read said the company was performing a review of its businesses to determine the "optimal mix of businesses."
The potential for significant Pfizer asset sales comes less than two years after the company closed its latest mega-merger, the $68 billion purchase of Wyeth. Pfizer had previously snatched up Warner-Lambert and Pharmacia in huge deals.
But Pfizer now faces sales-eroding patent expirations for its top drugs, including cholesterol-lowering Lipitor, and few newer drugs with the capacity to replace the lost revenue.
Anderson sees the potential for Pfizer to spin off five of its nine distinct business units: animal health, consumer health, nutritionals, Capsugel, and established products.
The biggest unit would be Pfizer's established-products division, which includes generic drugs. Anderson said this unit generated sales of $10 billion for 2010, but probably would grow to $17 billion in coming years when Lipitor and other products lose patent protection.
Such deals would leave behind four pharmaceutical units: primary care, specialty care, oncology and emerging markets. Anderson believes this represents the "innovative core" that Read has cited, and would include top-selling products such as Enbrel and Prevnar.
Anderson believes the deals could emerge this year and next. He expects most of the asset divestitures to be in the form of spinoffs to Pfizer shareholders, though Capsugel may be sold outright.
Anderson lifted his price target on Pfizer shares to $23 from $21.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Technology Roadshow

There is a technology roadshow organized by SkyQuest Technology Consulting ( across some cities in India which will be a common platform for innovators and entrepreneurs of biotech/lifescience sector.  The whole idea, is to promote technology transfers and licensing of technologies through an IP marketplace.  At this event, around 50 technologies will be showcased in the form of presentations, prototypes, technology briefings and interactive sessions.  The buyers, representing nearly 50 Industry players across India are expected to discover novel potential technologies.

The roadshows will spearhead the best IP marketplace at four different destinations across India in the month of March 2011. 

15th - Vishakhapatnam | 17th - Hyderabad| 19th – Ahmedabad | 22nd - Vadodara 

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Life Tech Pushes Speed Of Small, Fast DNA Sequencer

DNA sequencing’s first attempt at a personal-computer-like console is about to get a whole lot faster.
The Ion Torrent Personal Genome Machine (PGM), launched with much fanfare (and a Forbes cover) in December, will be 100 times more powerful than it was at launch by the third quarter, according to Life Technologies, the $3 billion life sciences company that makes it.
Life Technologies' Personal Genome Machine
That means that the PGM will be able to sequence 1 billion letters of DNA code in two hours, making it much more competitive with a rival machine, the MiSeq, developed by Illumina, which now dominates the sequencing business.
Perhaps more importantly, this leap would fulfill the promise made by Ion Torrent founder Jonathan Rothberg, who has promised that because his device relies on the same kind of semiconductor factories used to make Xboxes and iPods its performance will be able to improve 10-fold every six months. As he told me last year: “There isn’t a technology that we will not pass in a very short period of time. It doesn’t matter how far ahead they are.”
The initial Ion Torrent semiconductor chip could read out 10 million DNA letters. A newer chip for the same device could handle 100 million. The company is also pushing another measure, called read length, which is the length of DNA that the machine can read at a stretch. This will be pushed from 100 base pairs now to 400 next year, Life says. The new faster chip will cost $500 per two-hour run, the same as the previous version.
Jonathan Rothberg holding a wafer used to make the Ion Torrent PGM.
Previous DNA sequencers, like Illumina’s market-leading HiSeq, are far more powerful, churning through hundreds of billions of DNA letters at once. They are also more expensive, costing $700,000 or more. Illumina just announced that it expects customers to get 600 billion base pairs per run, pushing the cost of sequencing a human genome below $5,000. But these machines can take a week or longer to run.
The promise of the PGM was to allow researchers to get answers faster.

Life Science and Informatics

What is this?
is this a new industry?
or a old wine in a new bottle?

Well Life Sciences and Informatics can be anything form computational biology, all omes and omics, core bioinformatics to curation and literature mining, database creation, in the area of biology, chemistry , bio-chem space.

There are number of companies in India and bangalore is the forefront as a major bio-cluster with 20 to 30 companies in this sphere.

now how good are these companies doing?
how good are they in terms of the international markets and how profitable is their business?
what do they do?
their clients?

These are some interesting things that could be discussed in this blog page...

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