Personalized Medicine

Xconomy | Thermo Fisher Scientific Acquires Life Technologies in $13.6B Deal15 Apr

Local champion Life Technologies has been looking for a suitor to purchase it, and this morning announced that Thermo-Fisher is the lucky winner. Strikingly, Life Tech’s eCommerce solution is seen as strategic in the deal:

Personalized Medicine

BigThink: How to Read Your Own Body With Data04 Mar

At, Managing Editor Daniel Honan discusses the intersection of two of the biggest trends in healthcare and personalized medicine today – supporting patients from home with telemedicine, and tracking health information on an ongoing basis as in the Quantified Self movement.

I’ve been tracking food, exercise, water, sleep, steps walked and weight since Thanksgiving; as Daniel mentions, the data itself and the knowledge that my dietitian will review my logs each week have both had strong effects on my compliance.

How to Read Your Own Body With Data.

Personalized Medicine

NYTimes: Scientists Cite Advances on Two Kinds of Cancer05 Jun

It’s terrific to see such great results from recent oncology research,
including from our local Pfizer gang in La Jolla. I love Dr. Mano’s
anecdote about a critically ill patient who, two weeks into treatment
with a new experimental drug, was trolling the streets of Seoul
looking for good restaurants!

From The New York Times:

Scientists Cite Advances on Two Kinds of Cancer

Studies report significant progress taming two of the most intractable
types of cancer, melanoma and lung cancer.

Industry Updates,Personalized Medicine

Illumina Announces New Pricing for its Individual Genome Sequencing Service03 Jun

Hot off the presses, Illumina has just lowered prices on its Individual Genome Sequencing services to $19,500 – or $9,500 for patients with serious medical conditions who could benefit.

Industry Updates,Personalized Medicine

Illumina CEO Jay Flatley on How to Keep an Edge in the Fast-Paced World of Gene Sequencing | Xconomy06 Apr

Xconomy’s Luke Timmerman interviews Illumina CEO Jay Flatley on
innovation, competition and staying on top. Particularly insightful
are his views on the competitive landscape for next-gen sequencing,
bioinformatics and why there aren’t any billion-dollar bioinformatics companies (yet)
and the coming data management challenge in sequence data.

Healthcare Information Technology,Personalized Medicine

Illumina and Glenn Close Announce the First Full Coverage DNA Sequencing of a Named Female11 Mar

In a brilliant piece of co-marketing, Glenn Close and sequencing giant Illumina announce the full coverage DNA sequencing of her genome. How many more people do you think there are this morning asking if they should have their full genome sequenced? And do you think our Health IT systems are ready for this?

Personalized Medicine

Scientists Discover Causative Genetic Mutation Associated with Common Inherited Neurological Disorder10 Mar

In an exciting application of whole genome sequencing technologies, Richard Gibbs and James Lupski from Baylor used Life Tech’s SOLiD system to find the mutation implicated in Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease (CMT), a neurological disorder that currently affects 1 in 2,500 individuals in the United States. This acts as a proof of concept for whole genome sequencing as a diagnostic for human disease.

Personalized Medicine

A disposable assay?05 Mar

Startup Nanosphere in Northbrook Illinois has developed an entire assay in a small disposable package.

Nanosphere Test Cartridge Image 

Nanosphere uses a gold nanosphere probe to pack an entire assay – for a specific SNP or protein segment – into a small disposable package, and are targeting the pharmacogenetics and oncology market. Unfortunately, identifying whether the target is in the sample or not requires popping the cartridge into their reader for interpretation, but I would imagine their business case is that once the cartridge is used and the slide prepared it can then be sent away to a lab for analysis, and the slide might be more stable than biological sample.

Interestingly, the product already has FDA approval. Hmmm.

More on this product from MIT Technology Review at

Industry Updates,Personalized Medicine

Immuneering, Led by Young CEO and Mentor, Aims to Pick Which Cancer Drugs Should Work | Xconomy08 Jul

Boston-based Immuneering has pulled together the most concrete business case I’ve yet seen for the sort of Personalized Healthcare system we’re trying to build with Healthcare IT plugged into bioinformatics and genomics. In a nutshell:

 1. Take a drug like Novartis’ Proleukin, which has a one in ten chance of giving a long-lasting remission to kidney cancer or melanoma – BUT at a cost of $60,000 and with nasty side effects that may put patients in the intensive care unit.

2. Now build a $5,000 – $6,000 test that looks at proteins expressed on the surface of immune cells and inflammatory proteins in the blood, to predict whether that $60,000 Proleukin treatment will actually work for this patient.

Looks like the ideal win-win-win scenario. Patients win by gaining advance intel into whether a painful and expensive treatment is likely to do them more good than harm. Insurance companies win by weeding out patients who are likely to fail at a therapy in advance of investment. And Novartis wins by taking a drug that doctors might not prescribe today, knowing the potential downside, and making it far easier to prescribe to patients that will respond favorably.

Sound exciting? Sure does to me!

Industry Updates,Personalized Medicine

Biomarkers Update-Personalized Medicine01 Jun

Notes from what sounds like a great breakout session at the BIO conference in Atlanta last week, charting a pathway to personalized medicine by integrating biomarker tests into drug prescriptions. I would love to have been there for this conversation!
The gist: we have some ability today to predict whether a person will respond to a certain treatment by looking at biomarkers in their genome. However, there are business model and regulatory hurdles to expanding this ability. Partnership mechanisms between therapy providers and diagnostic providers will be key to overcoming these hurdles.

Company News

  • - 2013/03/04

    One of our team members is now working with Hospira on infuser product support. Contact us to find out more!

  • - 2010/10/24

    We're currently working with online elections provider Everyone Counts, Inc. Contact us to find out more!

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