BGI Touts Eventual Merck Deal
Beijing Genomics and Merck intend to collaborate, using BGI resources primarily to analyze genomic and epigenetic data off of Merck samples. The announcement was more than just a shot across the bow signaling BGI's intent to dominate the gene sequencing services world. It could eventually extend into the clinical arena, which could open up another whole new collaborative - and competitive - area with the West.
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Regeneron and Geisinger’s new collaboration to identify genetic variants and apply that knowledge to drug discovery and patient care is pharma’s most ambitious effort to date to exploit next-generation genomics, but its impact on drug discovery productivity won’t be known for years.
Evidence of progress for molecular diagnostics and instrumentation, the mainstays of the personalized medicine toolkit, was considerable in 2010. Much of the activity centered on sequencing, although its general utility in clinical diagnostics has not yet been demonstrated and whether measurements of gene expression can form the basis for a plethora of molecular tests also remains an open question. In abbreviated form, we list some of the important dealmaking activities and trends of the year.
Gene sequencing instrument providers are currently at the center of a range of corporate activities: acquisition, partnering, financing. As technology innovation continues, costs decrease, and the pace and scope of clinical genomic studies picks up, the notion of sequencing as the foundation for a clinical diagnostics platform is gaining more support. Delivering value to diagnostics customers ultimately may demand that instrument providers move downstream, involving themselves in data analysis and workflow and even test development, to prime the clinical market.