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Bill And Melinda Gates Foundation Makes Its Largest Ever Equity Investment In A Biotech Company

| Forbes | The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is investing $52 million in CureVac, a German company involved in making vaccines. It is the largest ever investment by the foundation in a company, reflecting a new strategy of not just giving grants but supporting and having a stake in businesses.

'Junk DNA' Debates Still Piling Up

| New York Times | Carl Zimmer visits a pair of genetics labs as he digs into the ongoing arguments over whether our genome's vast tracts of noncoding DNA are mostly "junk."

PacBio at AGBT

| Bio-IT World | Pacific Biosciences, the gold sponsor of this year's Advances in Genome Biology & Technology conference in Florida, hosted a workshop at the event that showed off the growing pipeline of tools for de novo diploid assembly, and ways in which routine use of this information could improve the practice of genomics.

February News and Product Briefs

| Bio-IT World | News and product releases from around the industry, including guidance from the Association for Molecular Pathology on direct-to-consumer genetic testing, and the winner of the Swimming with the Sharks Competition at the Molecular Medicine Tri Conference.

Reporter’s Notebook: Molecular Medicine Tri Conference 2015

| Bio-IT World | The 22nd annual Molecular Medicine Tri Conference in San Francisco is one of the year’s largest industry events for understanding human health on the level of genes, proteins, and cells, and this year’s conference tracked the latest trends in personalizing therapies and research programs with sharp attention to individuals’ unique molecular profiles.

GCAT Team Publishes Methods, Results from Benchmark Tests of Aligners and Variant Callers

| Bio-IT World | GCAT, the Genome Comparison & Analytic Testing platform for benchmarking the performance of basic informatics tools, now has a formal home in the scientific literature with the publication of a paper in Nature Communications.

10X Genomics at AGBT

| Bio-IT World | On the first day of the annual Advances in Genome Biology & Technology conference in Marco Island, Florida, 10X Genomics has unveiled its GemCode Platform for recovering long-range information from genomes sequenced on Illumina short-read instruments.

Allele Frequency Community to Share Data on Population-Wide Incidence of Genetic Variants

| Bio-IT World | This morning, diagnostics and laboratory supply company QIAGEN announced the creation of the Allele Frequency Community, a network of academic centers and commercial groups who will share data on the genetic variants they’ve uncovered during human sequencing studies.

Foundation Medicine and H3 Biomedicine Sign Oncology Agreement

| Bio-IT World | Foundation Medicine and H3 Biomedicine announced a multi-year collaboration today for the discovery and development of precision medicines in oncology. The collaboration marries Foundation Medicine’s comprehensive genomic knowledgebase of more than 35,000 genomic profiles, FoundationCORE, with H3 Biomedicine’s drug discovery engine and computational biology platform.

Illumina Introduces Automated Library Preparation

| Bio-IT World News Brief | This morning, DNA sequencing company Illumina released a new product, NeoPrep, to work alongside its line of next-generation sequencers.

Networks of Genome Data Will Transform Medicine

| MIT Technology Review | 2015's Breakthrough Technologies: A global network of millions of genomes could be medicine's next great advance. Availability: 1-2 years

Blood Test for Early Cancer Detection

| MIT Technology Review | Among Tech Review's top breakthroughs of 2015: liquid biopsy. Fast DNA-sequencing machines are leading to simple blood tests for cancer. Availability: now

23andMe Receives FDA Authorization, Will Not Share Test Results

| Bio-IT World | The FDA has authorized 23andMe to offer its Bloom syndrome carrier status report to customers, CEO Anne Wojcicki said in an email to customers last night, but the company will not be making the reports available.

Developing Chemistry Apps in the Cloud

| Bio-IT World | Contributed Commentary | The rapid incorporation of touch devices, such as smart phones and tablets, into our personal and business lives increases pressure on software providers to deliver technology via mobile apps. Many tool providers are working to develop mobile versions of existing product that are designed specifically for touch devices. 

News and Notes from TriCon 2015

| Bio-IT World | The Molecular Medicine Tri-Conference is being held in San Francisco this week, and several updates and new products have emerged already. For live coverage of the event, follow @BioITWorld and the hashtag #TriCon on Twitter.

Playing the Markets: ClusterK Launches Cloud Scheduler, Open Source GATK Pipeline

| Bio-IT World | Life is too short to wait for GATK to finish. A new company, ClusterK, is releasing its genomics pipeline to illustrate how complex workflows like the Broad Institute’s GATK can be run efficiently—and much faster—on the cloud thanks to grid scheduling and clever use of Amazon's spot markets.  

Scientists unveil map of epigenome a second genetic code

| Yahoo Finance | Researchers unveiled the map of the "epigenome" in the journal Nature on Wednesday, alongside nearly two dozen related papers. The human genome is the blueprint for building an individual person. The epigenome can be thought of as the cross-outs and underlinings of that blueprint: if someone's genome contains DNA associated with cancer but that DNA is "crossed out" by molecules in the epigenome, for instance, the DNA is unlikely to lead to cancer. As sequencing individuals' genomes to infer the risk of disease becomes more common, it will become all the more important to figure out how the epigenome is influencing that risk as well as other aspects of health.

BIOVIA Launches Biologics Informatics Program

| Bio-IT WorldBIOVIA, the life sciences-oriented subsidiary of Dassault Systèmes formerly known as Accelrys, today introduced a new informatics platform for companies developing biologic drugs, in an announcement at the Molecular Medicine Tri Conference in San Francisco.

BioNano Teases Out the Genome's Structural Quirks

| Bio-IT World | BioNano’s Irys platform doesn’t sequence DNA. Instead, it’s all about assembly: sorting out exactly where different parts of the genome fit into chromosomes. The company says Irys is the only commercially available system that can handle structural variations in large, complex genomes.

Maverix Biomics and Elsevier Sign NGS Data Interpretation Agreement

| Bio-IT World News Brief | Maverix Biomics signed a strategic agreement with Elsevier this morning at CHI’s  Molecular Medicine Tri-Conference in San Francisco. The Maverix Analytic Platform will complement Elsevier’s Pathway Studio sample-to-insight workflow and incorporate biological data from Elsevier’s biology journals by providing easy, push-button data analysis.
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