Monday, December 29, 2008

White House Office of Science and Technology Policy

Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) on White House Office of Science and Technology Policy

BIO Commends President-Elect Obama’s Commitment to Funding American Innovation

Biotechnology News

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Monday, December 22, 2008)- Jim Greenwood, President and CEO of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), issued the following statement in response to President-Elect Obama’s appointment of Harvard University professor John Holdren as assistant to the President for Science and Technology and Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy:

“We applaud President-Elect Obama’s visionary and ambitious plans to invest in one of our country’s core strengths: innovation. President-elect Obama’s comments on the importance of scientific discovery and his appointment of Professor John Holdren indicate that the incoming Administration is truly committed to continuing America’s global leadership in technological innovation. The country that invented the airplane, the jet engine, and the Internet can continue to lead the world in innovation given the proper investment incentives and public policies.

Arizona Biotechnology Marketing
“Biotechnology is our nation’s most recent contribution to technological discovery and stands at the center of our innovation economy, generating high-wage, high-skill, green jobs. Biotechnology research is the most promising science for developing cures and treatments for some of the world's most intractable diseases, such as cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, HIV/AIDS, and diabetes, and for addressing some of the most pressing agricultural and environmental challenges facing our society today, including the development of renewable sources of clean energy.

Arizona SEO

“Biotechnology research is vital to the future of this nation’s continued economic expansion, but more importantly, to improving global health and increasing environmental and agricultural sustainability. President-Elect Obama’s expressed support for scientific discovery is a welcome signal that the incoming administration understands our industry’s overall economic impact and supports the critically important research we undertake.”

miRBase Update - Novel Small RNAs Discovered

Arizona Internet Marketing
Arizona Biotechnology Marketing

Novel Small RNAs Discovered, Contribute to Significant miRBase Update

Biotechnology News

Press Release Summary: Several research groups have recently made discoveries of novel non-coding small RNAs. The small RNA discoveries were made possible, in part, by LC Sciences’ small RNA discovery service. The new microRNA sequences were included as part of the latest update to the miRBase sequence database of experimentally verified miRNAs. The Sanger Institute released the latest version (12.0) of miRBase on September 1st. The number of verified miRNAs has been increased from 6396 to 8619 hairpin precursor miRNAs expressing 8273 mature miRNA products. With the addition of 2062 new mature miRNA sequences, this represents the largest update in miRBase history.

Press Release Body: Non-coding (ncRNAs) are a large class of RNAs which do not encode proteins but possess regulatory functions at the level of translation in cells of various species. There are an increasing amount of data suggesting that there are likely many more ncRNAs that exist, yet to be discovered. Custom small RNA discovery microarrays have been shown to be an effective approach for uncovering novel ncRNAs experimentally1 and/or to validate predicted candidate ncRNAs2. Recently, researchers at Baylor College of Medicine employed a discovery strategy of computational prediction and microarray expression profiling to uncover a large number of novel small RNAs in embryonic stem (ES) cells3. Dr. Preethi Gunaratne and co-workers reported using computation, custom small RNA microarray from LC Sciences, and validation experiments to uncover hundreds of novel small RNAs in ES cells. These small non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) were from adult tissue progenitor transcript sequences and are micro-conserved elements. The detection probes were designed for custom array synthesis by LC Sciences, Houston, TX and included the standard microRNA (miRNA) sequences in miRBase4, a comprehensive panel of 2,617 micro-conserved ncRNA sequences, and several hundreds of literature reported small RNAs or miRNAs. Two generations of custom array designs were used for optimizing the probes. These profiling studies using ES cell lines as well as normal adult mouse tissues identified 545 small RNAs that are enriched in ES cells over adult cells. Of these, more than 100 exhibited down-regulation in ES gene-knockout cells typical of miRNA.

In a similar way, LC Sciences’ custom small RNA arrays have provided means for validation of computational predictions of Bombyx mori (silkworm) 5 and Solanum lycopersicum (Tomato) 6 miRNAs. These are species whose genomes are incomplete at the present time. It is well known that miRNAs are important players for regulation of cellular activities. Therefore, the establishment of miRNAs in these traditional industrial or agricultural important species should lead to better understanding of the fundamentals of their growth, maturation, and disease-resistance.

The small RNA discoveries were made possible, in part, by LC Sciences’ small RNA discovery service. Using an innovative µParaflo® platform technology and proprietary probe design, it enables highly sensitive and specific direct detection of small RNAs in your sample. This service is comprehensive; from array design to sample to complete data set, allowing efficient and reliable discovery of novel miRNA and other types of ncRNAs.

The new Bombyx and Solanum sequences were included as part of the latest update to the miRBase sequence database of experimentally verified miRNAs. The Sanger Institute released the latest version (12.0) of miRBase on September 1st.

The number of verified miRNAs has been increased from 6396 to 8619 hairpin precursor miRNAs expressing 8273 mature miRNA products. With the addition of 2062 new mature miRNA sequences, this represents the largest update in miRBase history.

Many sequences have been updated or revised. For the first time, miRNAs are reported from: eleven new Drosophila species, Platypus, Tomato, Red Flour Bettle, and two Polyomaviruses. There has been a significant increase in the number of miRNAs reported for Human and model species such as Chimpanzee, Mouse, and Arabidopsis as well as agriculturally important species such as Rice, Soybean, Pig, and Chicken.

The updated probe content from miRBase version 12.0 is currently available on all of our standard or custom small RNA microarrays.

More information about LC Sciences’ Small Non-coding RNA Discovery Service and the µParaflo® technology is available at: http://www.lcsciences.com/small_non_coding.html.

About LC Sciences - LC Sciences is a genomics and proteomics products company offering a comprehensive line of DNA, RNA, and peptide microarrays for nucleic acid/protein profiling and functional analysis, biomarker-discovery, novel drug screening, and the custom development of miniaturized assay devices for diagnostics and biosensing applications. Based on the µParaflo® microfluidics technology, LC Sciences’ innovative products offer significant flexibility and customization capability for rapidly evolving, diverse customer needs. In an era of rapid technological advancement, LC Sciences offers service products which enable efficient one-stop solution for assays of DNA, RNA, protein, enzymes, antibodies, or small molecules. LC Sciences also provides unique synthetic DNA and RNA products such as OligoMix®, generated using their microfludic biochip synthesizer. These innovative products drive synthetic biology and systems biology applications by reducing the cost and increasing the speed of highly multiplexing large-scale nucleic acid and protein engineering experiments.

More information about LC Sciences is available at www.lcsciences.com.
1. Vagin VV, Sigova A, Li C, Seitz H, Gvozdev V, Zamore PD. (2006) A distinct small RNA pathway silences selfish genetic elements in the germline. Science 313(5785), 320-324.
2. Cummins JM, He Y, Leary RJ, Pagliarini R, Diaz L.A Jr, Sjoblom T, Barad O,
Bentwich Z, Szafranska AE, Labourier E, et al. (2006) The colorectal microRNAome. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 103, 3687-92.
3. Gu P, Reid JG, Gao X, Shaw CA, Creighton C, Tran PL, Zhou X, Drabek RB, Steffen DL, Hoang DM, Weiss MK, Naghavi AO, El-daye J, Khan MF, Legge GB, Wheeler DA, Gibbs RA, Miller JN, Cooney AJ, Gunaratne PH. (2008) Novel MicroRNA Candidates and miRNA-mRNA Pairs in Embryonic Stem (ES) Cells. PloS One 3(7), e2548.
4. Griffiths-Jones S, Grocock R, van Dongen S, Bateman A, Enright A. miRBase: microRNA sequences, targets and gene nomenclature. Nucleic Acids Res 34 (Database issue), D140–D144.
5. He PA, Nie Z, Chen J, Chen J, Lv Z, Sheng Q, Zhou S, Gao X, Kong L, Wu X, Jin Y, Zhang Y. (2008) Identification and characteristics of microRNAs from Bombyx mori. BMC Genomics 9(1), 248.
6. Zhang J, Zeng R, Chen J, Liu X, Liao Q. (2008) Identification of conserved microRNAs and their targets from Solanum lycopersicum Mill. Gene [Epub ahead of print].

Web Site: http://www.lcsciences.com/small_non_coding.html

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Arizona Twitter Users - Twitter Arizona

Arizona Twitter Users

Twitter Arizona

Below is a list of hundreds users of twitter.com who might somehow be related to Arizona (according to Google this is all there are.) I'm sure I left a lot of really good friends off the list. Please help me fix that.

If you don't want to be on the list, please let me know. If you do what to be on the list let me know as well by email to Bill Austin.

If you are looking to follow Arizona Tweeters (Twitter users) there is a long list below and links will open in another window.

Be sure to start by adding

Bill Austin

Bill Austin (East Valley Living)

and Kathee Austin



PS: This list is based on Google randomly deciding who is in Arizona so if you are not, please accept our apologies. Also, as you are looking at people and deciding whether to follow them, be sure to check the profile carefully since the users here might not be from Arizona, might not be active (e.g. last update 13 months ago or never) might not actually be the person or organization indicated and a few might not even be a person or organization that you want to be associated with. As I find my closest twitter friends I will be moving them up on the list.

Thank you,



@swedeclean
@robertoarmijo
@roseannhiggins
@teambrewer
@azfamily
@SteveBelt
@raillife
@djwillis
@drubloomfield
@dragonblogger
@Rpullen
@azcpr
@brianshaler
@shalerjump
@AcmePhoto
@livejamie
@jazyfko
@Yochanan
@rehill
@geroco
@dcodez
@elizasea
@AymeeB
@TaraRose
@LauraJoRichins
@evo_terra
@carlcatedral
@minervao
@Wolfeagle
@cwaterhouse
@dpatricklewis
@tonicphotos
@ckschweiger
@CraigsArizona
@PhoenixREGuy
@PapaGrande
@housechick
@bizgirl
@v2lmedia
@MichelePW
@bharadhwaj
@ashdog_94
@hannahsplace
@Monkey_Brad
@Avahra
@NearHi
@AmandaVega
@NastyEagleEyes
@drawbackwards
@blkcadi
@bkalkman
@heatherlarson
@Sarahjnaz
@UofA
@aerikuh
@khrisloux
@jessenicholas
@NAUStats
@bipolarturtle
@ERIC_WATSON
@tonyvincent
@azbubba
@toddhuffman
@southwestliz
@jimmcp
@alexischr
@vickisellsaz
@MattOrtega
@NoelleInAz
@lylahl
@chadm
@aedavis
@scottsdalehomes
@dwayrynen
@michellerigg
@psue
@dfrankdesigns
@AzMike146
@professorjohn
@monicamullen
@icebomb
@purplecowllc
@normradio
@insomniacllc
@bonnieburke
@lisaborowsky
@cherylfarmer
@TucsonAZ
@cespringer
@biddle
@natejacobs
@explore4corners
@jennymesserly
@sorden
@wayne_gretzky
@Deongello
@BeckyPallack
@arizonastartups
@Montecore
@mightyb
@idbjorh
@LaurenCalkins
@MABBS
@MeghanEvans
@azbizman
@azcowgirl
@kpho
@Aviatlas
@ALZelonis
@WOnet
@sparkyrocks
@stevengroves
@MarkRMatthews
@dahwg
@chadarizona
@robynhardy
@zstruck
@azprodjs
@ERAUPrescott
@62mph
@DavidDucic
@evilbobby
@2moms2kids
@brentrasmussen
@astricon
@ChircoVWParts
@TerenceSmelser
@hsmelser
@ArizonaFB
@ekreeger
@naum
@stevesmename
@aspeninn
@AZSnowbowl
@kbondelli
@shampookie
@TheTauz
@ToddCarling
@davidallred
@wardandrews
@mikeonline
@ChatChew
@iongroup
@3_Diva_Girls
@freekii
@jtrump
@myra1271
@JessicaLHansen
@chatterbox1213
@sdobie
@terieee
@politickeraz
@YogaDanYoga
@reluctantaqua
@StatiK99
@samfrederick
@Labianne
@UnicornMedia
@Alrady40
@pizzicata09
@onepinkfuzzy
@arizonacoffee
@openskymedia
@vballprncss
@ccole
@travel2dot0
@kadedworkin
@cogdog
@anafrias
@levizlefoshizle
@ArizonaDUILaw
@amechtley
@Goodeye
@izzyvideo
@jadaz
@amyb88
@anilmjain
@aly_o
@localnomad
@rsmart
@kylerichter
@mincedmedia
@Montelucia
@iamchanelle
@travelingdarren
@jacquelynfickes
@brandxtshirts
@tonyfelicepr
@azreporter
@Fuzzclone
@marcopaz
@KellyMerly
@ActionFigureE
@desertlibrarian
@LeannaDv
@mjacob
@phxgrl
@chicblondegeek
@eSizzle
@thesmartrenter
@bizarrebazaar
@alanhogan
@ReevesTeam
@gangplank
@iSundevil
@dansturm
@newparadigm
@AkuNoHana
@c4women
@jmawby
@leslielohn
@UncommonAsian
@RobAcosta
@mikehun
@quaga
@FlagstaffToday
@celsius
@nickmartin
@TheBearDown
@cbrxb
@BannerGoodSam
@bluerosecafe
@GreenO
@chad22c
@storyteller
@AaronMSB
@VOTS_Roads
@KKDur
=========
@designdroid
@ButterSideUp
@NESNcom
@ABC5_RTN5
@JennFredaz
@gpyounglife
@abc15
@juliemclaughlin
@NECN
@SamHenrie
@nel5on
@desertgrace
@johnmars
@mortgagebroker
@robina
@JustBarbi
@jtdesigns
@FakeMagnumPI
@jukaman
@DesertSoapstone
@PopDaddy
@debsmouse
@dw31
@49ersNFL
@WorkFromWithin
@AngryChile
@jeffmetcalfe
@ericparekh
@annieblawrence
@ASUSunDevils
@luzbonita
@holdTIGHT
@audette
@ghc
@dulcitalove
@BRich404
@DrtyFootprints
@cthulhia
@CashflowFeed
@cesargamez
@motherjones
@PatriotsInsider
@pagecrusher
@syalam
@denajporter
@chuck091956
@MikeHaller
@DR1665
@DoubleBarrel
@nerdhole
@PhunkiePhlowas
@tomtrush
@CardinalsNFL
@FOXSPORTSAZ
@d2008
@kdschultz
@jessiejensen
@eduard
@justcherie
@twotehr
@Joanna_Zajusz
@IUPUIStats
@huertanix
@buyhomes
@TwinkieR
@neverlost
@Dusing
@ClaudiaScott
@siouxzen
@dj_shanti
@telehelp
@MikeAdorno
@AZPressClub
@edventures
@pallagi
@bluemama
@chaserk
@NewmanDesign
@dbacks
@cronkitenews
@billtronfriends
@Macker
@dtd
@winglet85
@pixalu
@CityNorth
@mrmmosh
@PeoriaAZ
@Syn3rgyTV
@kateonbroadway
@cglibrary
@jeffshelman
@stevedvorak
@paulkostabi
@Organizing
@sborsch
@Slack006
@Withoutsleep
@integrum
@Sunroom
@missmelysse
@BreastPumpMama
@dnnsldr
@bowerman4794
@DogWings
@strebel
@StayTunedReport
@cageyjames
@Rhysbowen
@tcar
@dosco
@UglyAmerican
@KJZZHereandNow
@phxmoviebears
@lmantion
@justin_lewis
@Maryannead
@bjschnei
@gilgul
@havanajiddo
@aaroneden
@rotary
@paulslaybaugh
@CitakamenKaden
@JenHep
@hungryclone
@tweetanit
@seo_consultants
@davidzook
@silverdragon
@VisitFlagstaff
@cactusmango
@jmchood
@davidbilby
@crochetfuntime
@DrJew
@Blanketfort
@blafrance
@shayes2
@thebottleshoptv
@missjenna
@VaguelyArtistic
@GoodmanSales
@lilly3084
@jamespatterson
@haley2fresh
@evancover
@jenn0010
@KansasStats
@yacqueli
@thomasjkeeley
@sonatacreative
@KatyFogle
@darmster
@joshcvt
@scottsdaleaz
@ScottsdalePD
@blgrey
@tamraaz
@HarryR
@jfcap
@SkimmerTarget
@rob_denunzio
@mountainsports
@SOHH
@Skooldaze
@AudreyRae
@MDGoesGreen
@IvyEnglish
@ovidem
@samanthad
@Matt_Siltala
@paradisoparadis
@joelthomas
@az0madman
@berning
@blutazz
@PrimaDonnaBoutq
@dunlapstudios
@fredleblanc
@nethooks
@prbill6
@rocketmedia
@Mike_Padgett
@CiaoEnrico
@alanbradford
@gurupanguji
@BizNetworking
@jdwagner
@bradshaffer
@joncasanova
@WheatmarkSusan
@CoryImdieke
@MightyMommy
@SiliconBuddha
@runningaudio
@mutantboss
@az4vlad
@yisel
@jmathieu1758
@lizwebpage
@TweetyWords
@PJFaur
@eats3
@ASUStats
@chasers
@mkosach
@catherinereagor
@jki3
@grant_perry
@SparkyNM
@giantsand
@7dayshootout
@stevedragoo
@YogiClo
@BrotherD
@morphingmichael
@JerryAZ
@Queer
@azmike
@goneriding24_7
@tashwong
@turtlehkr
@QueenGeek
@ninky
@MarshallGreenAZ
@MissWilder
@casassaman
@jaredmaine
@TrevorGoff
@calliecarey
@MarquetteU
@MelissaCrow
@AAA_Arizona
@vasylger
@KUSports
@JimZaccaria
@ElizabethHannan
@ModusOperandi
@KristaMRogers
@JoshTCIB
@Hildebrant
@artistzeke
@memnews
@GirlsofTwitt
@Benjy1416
@duelingdenim
@mog
@greghughes
@alaannual
@Sarah_Palin
@FabGrandma
@JoeManna
@JoJoTabares
@blacquemagic
@Ittousagi
@J_Tee
@AinsleyofAttack
@ztnewetep
@TheDietDivas
@EventChaser
@Jason_at_PeiWei
@irenehammond
@LadyLogician
@dblunt
@DBarg
@slick
@silvermyst
@daninreallife
@mbeverlygill
@mvanhorn
@johnpemble
@frankie_johnson
@JanainaM
@Orangemedown
@kylewalling
@nivik
@spencerparikh
@transmanaz
@IsabellaVr
@kpho_headlines
@TomGranberg
@AniaKubicki
@Clintus
@far_west
@zamikazi
@ArizonaRealtor
@dlr1967
@VoxAZ
@dverwer
@tjoseph
@spellwight
@shannonsnow
@jqgill
@vinod364
@jasonhmanning
@drcami
@unclebear
@azravenwood
@Achievers_Life
@Doctor_V
@davidteter
@maddogmedia
@NAUDL
@LuckyGabi
@rezendi
@Philogical
@TweetUpAZ
@garylewisOR
@zoos_aquariums
@monarch13
@RickyWells
@TomOKeefe1
@ramkitten
@nr1
@ScooterRoss
@wolowizard
@dcdewar
@ivforeclosures
@mordecaidesign
@Court_AZ
@topherchris
@mickythompson
@SUjunkie
@wendycowles
@chancec
@DavidWallace
@leeahotis
@ARIZONA
@michaeljbarber
@GrandmaL
@martinjfoley
@congamer
@billgx
@Chuckinator
@chriscardinal
@SWSRT_Boots
@sacredmoment
@gothunts
@JDMonki
@lynnhayespr
@kalikajaros
@MikeAbrams
@TaylorGenovese
@luv2shoppe
@100livesfrom1
@MarkNauf
@farmersalmanac
@Hagan_Dietz_is
@infixum
@lostbro1
@ZorkFox
@Selfjourney
@851kellen
@laurengsnell
@jaytwilson
@thedesignfoundr
@TheHenry
@letscounthedays
@AlignNorth
@WesleyTech
@gsightseeing
@love2live10101
@RyanFarley
@areyousocial
@AZRealEstate
@earlcreps
@davemammen
@billfinger
@shoyeb
@sboggan
@Debalina
@Anarbor
@suckapunkin
@whysosullen
@Amiesmom
@GlendaleDesigns
@mattmckimmy
@DesignProf
@Milami
@jritch
@trboggan
@MelissaPR
@stevefrancia
@kNewbyGallery
@CyberGifts
@3twenty3
@Rabies
@TelleTWA
@uberingram
@TheCardinals
@trimbleoutdoors
@leuga
@Nerdiphied
@dkerry
@Blazer0x
@cbertsch
@twocell
@angelanimals
@paulvalach
@specialKevin
@Little_K
@eQuiNews
@unique_coffee
@SDRadio
@CarolD
@DinkerP2
@flagbiznews
@herbcowgirl
@docmurdock
@alicejrobison
@glencreno
@jaredstill
@Jaysonnhs
@SMcCaffrey
@sean_bartlett
@jon_gabriel
@KeeganOrange
@jack_webster
@JoshCalkins
@Zandroid
@MrsKimNicole
@Debkrol
@peterpham
@scott_donaldson
@steckperson
@ThenLisaSaid
@caleonard
@ArizonaStats
@cmonstur
@Lolofishyfoo
@louderthanadam
@MuseumModernArt
@Libertywriter
@ginnymc
@seasonedsexpert
@pschaer
@chris_willard
@SEOSEM
@zachmorrison
@trishskee
@Mitchellsbrain
@Joestains
@mikeysan
@hellebore5000
@AZCardinals
@lorilori
@igorficas
@GoDaddyGuy
@kynn
@ShawnStagg
@banastas
@StateOfArizona
@et_cetera
@oklahomansports
@johntynan
@YvesHoebeke
@HRCaz
@alew
@FlockYou
@LiveWorld
@whittylaw
@PhoenixMonELdy
@kastenspethmann
@supairish
@az_dbacks
@DragonI
@johnon
@tmintner
@LennarPhoenix
@StarNet
@NewsOK
@cannonmx
@bethal
@MrCheapToday
@slaihingPG3BLOG
@forex_queen
@Burnsie_SEO
@morganfr3sh
@missdetails
@Lrantz
@mikeyberryman
@Skidmark
@Mdevera
@ADHDParenting
@brendanloy
@valdezign
@lrgeans
@zenzino
@Ektor
@ArizonaTourism
@azwebdesign
@scolson
@zscott
@wtfamandah
@whynotakechance
@xsparkage
@SexyEdwin
@Moaz7
@ArizonaDOT
@yohaves
@asym
@Kulamafi


Arizona Biotechnology Marketing
Biotechnology News

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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Scottsdale Biotechnology

"The Economic Report" Show to Feature City of Scottsdale

Deerfield Beach, FL, December 26, 2008 --(PR.com)--

The producers of The Economic Report are pleased to announce that City of Scottsdale, Arizona will be featured in an upcoming segment on topics, trends and issues related to “Hidden Gems of the Bio Tech Industry” as part of the show’s Leaders in Economic Development series.

During the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, the economic base of Scottsdale was highly dependent upon tourism. Few other local industries existed, and Scottsdale was regarded as primarily a bedroom community of Phoenix. Over the past decade, however, the City has undergone a transformation.

Located in the heart of the desert southwest, just a short distance from Sky Harbor International Airport, Scottsdale is a premier location for new or expanding companies. With a growing population of more than 240,000, and more than 50% of residents with a bachelor's degree or higher, Scottsdale offers businesses a highly educated workforce and a prime location for competing in today's global economy. Because of their competitive advantages, Scottsdale is attracting sustainable and clean technologies, biotechnology industries, aerospace and aviation industries, software firms, corporate and regional headquarters, administrative headquarters, and advanced business and professional service industries.

"We are positioning Scottsdale for short- and long-term economic prosperity by strengthening, expanding, and diversifying our economic resources and achieving international awareness," says Harold Stewart, Acting Economic Vitality General Manager for the City of Scottsdale. "We are attracting small to mid-sized companies that generate high wages, provide new technologies, or support the environmental sustainability of the planet while having minimal community impacts."

In 2007, Scottsdale attracted 15 new companies with 1,400 jobs at an annual average salary of $52,000. The area has seen over $3.1 billion in planned, under construction, or completed new development.

"Scottsdale's future as a desirable place to live, work, and visit is dependent upon a dynamic, diversified, and growing economic base that compliments the character of our community," says Stewart. "We are balancing the competing needs of residents and businesses so neighborhoods are protected and enhanced, while business districts are competitive and attractive."

The five-minute segment will highlight the economic growth occurring in Scottsdale and will primarily focus in the development of the biotechnology sector. Interviews will include Stewart along with representatives from the Flinn Foundation, InNexus Biotechnology, Mayo Clinic and The Translational Genomics Institute (TGen).

For more information about the City of Scottsdale, please visit www.scottsdaleaz.gov.

Arizona Internet Marketing
Biotechnology News

Monday, December 22, 2008

Breast Cancer Treatment Offers Better Outcome


For Women with Breast Implants

Breast Cancer Treatment Offers Better Outcome

At A Glance

  • Brachytherapy can successfully treat early-stage breast cancer in women with implants and preserve the breast’s appearance.
  • Breast brachytherapy substantially reduces the risk of implant hardening.
  • Approximately one in eight women who undergo breast augmentation will develop breast cancer during her lifetime.
  • CHICAGO — Women with early-stage breast cancer who have undergone breast augmentation may be treated successfully with a partial-breast radiation treatment called brachytherapy, according to a study presented today at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). Patients treated with brachytherapy have better cosmetic outcomes and avoid the risk of the implant hardening, compared to patients who undergo whole-breast radiation therapy.

    Arizona Internet Marketing

    The most common breast cancer treatment for patients with breast implants is skin-sparing mastectomy and implant exchange. Whole-breast radiation therapy after lumpectomy is an option, but carries a substantial risk during the healing process of scar tissue wrapping around the implant, causing it to become rock-hard and extremely painful. This condition, known as capsular contracture, also distorts the appearance of the breast.

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    SAVE THE DATE - APRIL 7 - BIOZONA 2009

    Friday, December 19, 2008

    New Drug for Cancer Treatment of Immune System - Study

    TGen, Scottsdale Healthcare, Mayo Clinic study starts for new drug that could bolster the immune systems of cancer victims



    12-19-2008

    SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Dec. 19, 2008 - The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), Scottsdale Healthcare and Mayo Clinic are testing a new drug that could help cancer patients by stimulating the immune system.
    Clinical trials of the drug VTX-2337 are being conducted at TGen Clinical Research Services at Scottsdale Healthcare, a partnership of Phoenix-based TGen and Scottsdale-based Scottsdale Healthcare Corp., and at Mayo Clinic in Arizona.

    Dr. Ramesh Ramanathan, Medical Director of TGen Clincal Research Services at Scottsdale Healthcare, said the new drug appears promising.

    "VTX-2337 is a new, novel, small molecule aimed at stimulating the immune cells in the blood, lymph nodes, and in and around the tumor. It represents an exciting new class of agents for cancer therapy with good preclinical evidence of activity," Dr. Ramanathan said.

    The Phase I trial, a yearlong first-in-humans test, will study the drug's safety. If successful, a Phase II trial will test the drug's effectiveness on tumors.

    A weakened immune system is often the result of advanced cancer. The hope is that this new drug will actually help enable the immune system to slow down the growth of tumors, and perhaps even shrink them, Dr. Ramanathan said.

    VTX-2337 is the first drug of its kind developed by San Diego-based VentiRx Pharmaceuticals Inc. The biopharmaceutical company is focused on the development of new Toll-Like Receptor 8 (TLR8) agonists, which are small molecules that prompt a response in the body's immune system. The drugs are intended to treat cancer, respiratory and autoimmune diseases.

    "VentiRx is very excited to be working with TGen, Scottsdale Healthcare and Mayo Clinic on this important and novel program," said Michael Kamdar, Executive Vice President and Chief Business Officer at VentiRx. "Entering Phase I clinical trials represents a significant milestone for VentiRx and our TLR efforts in that we have rapidly advanced into a clinical development company with a novel molecule that may play an important role and have broad application in the treatment of cancer."

    VTX-2337 is a small molecule TLR8 agonist that is expected to be used in combination with standard of care for the treatment of patients with cancer. Preclinical evaluation of VTX-2337 suggests that it may play a key role in augmenting the innate arm of the immune system.

    There are two broad components of the immune system, the innate arm, and the adaptive arm. Both generally aim to eliminate viruses and bacteria.

    -- The innate arm senses infectious agents as they infect the body by recognizing structures they have in common, such as lipids, proteins, sugars, and nucleic acids (DNA and RNA). This is an initial rapid response, which is not precise but potent.

    -- The adaptive arm of the immune system is instructed by the innate arm to devise more specific responses to unique components of the invading pathogens. This is a more precise response and takes longer, especially when an infectious agent is encountered for the first time.

    The first clinical trial at TCRS at Scottsdale Healthcare will investigate the safety and pharmacology of multiple doses of VTX-2337 in patients with late-stage cancer. For more information about this clinical trial, please call Joyce Ingold, R.N., research patient care coordinator for Scottsdale Healthcare, at 480-323-1339.

    The clinical trial coordinator for Mayo Clinic is Dianna Boughter, who can be reached at 480-301-9875.

    "VTX-2337 is the first selective TLR8 compound to reach the clinic, and we are hopeful that modulation of the innate immune response will provide a benefit to patients in a number of oncology indications," said Dr. Robert Hershberg, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at VentiRx.

    # # #

    About TGen
    The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life changing results. Research at TGen is focused on helping patients with diseases such as cancer, neurological disorders and diabetes. TGen is on the cutting edge of translational research where investigators are able to unravel the genetic components of common and complex diseases. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities, TGen believes it can make a substantial contribution to the efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. For more information, visit: www.tgen.org.


    About Scottsdale Healthcare
    Scottsdale Healthcare is a primary clinical research site for TGen. TGen Clinical Research Services (TCRS) at Scottsdale Healthcare is housed in the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare, located on the Scottsdale Healthcare Shea medical campus. Scottsdale Healthcare is the not-for-profit parent organization of the Scottsdale Healthcare Shea, Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn and Scottsdale Healthcare Thompson Peak hospitals, Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center, Scottsdale Clinical Research Institute, TGen Clinical Research Services at Scottsdale Healthcare, Scottsdale Healthcare Home Health Services, Scottsdale Healthcare Community Health Services, and Scottsdale Healthcare Foundation. For additional information, visit www.shc.org.


    About Mayo Clinic
    Mayo Clinic Cancer Center is one of only 39 U.S. medical centers that have been named as a National Cancer Institute (NCI) Comprehensive Cancer Center. To receive this designation, an institution must meet rigorous standards demonstrating scientific excellence and the ability to integrate diverse research approaches to address the problem of cancer. Mayo Clinic Cancer Center is the only national, multi-site center with the NCI's Comprehensive Cancer Center designation. In Arizona, Mayo's clinical and research experts work together to address the complex needs of cancer patients, with a dedication to understanding the biology of cancer; discovering new ways to predict, prevent, diagnose and treat cancer; and transforming the quality of life for cancer patients today and in the future.

    About VentiRx Pharmaceuticals
    VentiRx Pharmaceuticals Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company committed to the development and commercialization of novel medicines for the treatment of cancer, respiratory and autoimmune diseases. The company's initial focus is on developing small molecule TLR-based product candidates for oncology and allergy. VentiRx is a privately held organization headquartered in San Diego with operations in Seattle. For additional information, visit www.ventirx.com.



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    Thursday, December 11, 2008

    AZ Biodiesel - Arizona Biodiesel

    AZ Biodiesel - Arizona Biodiesel

    Evliving.com reports that AZ Bio Diesel officially opened for full service. The facility is the largest licensed biodiesel production plant in Arizona.

    Biodiesel has become one of the most prevalent ways Arizonans have decided to “Go Green.” AZ BioDiesel, currently the state’s largest licensed biodiesel production facility, has officially opened up full service to the general public.


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    AZ Biodiesel Full Service Facility Opens to General Public


    Biodiesel has become one of the most prevalent ways Arizonans have decided to “Go Green.” AZ BioDiesel, currently the state’s largest licensed biodiesel production facility, has officially opened up full service to the general public.

    Biodiesel is a cleaning-burning, American-made alternative fuel, approved as a motor fuel for diesel engines by the U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Department of Transportation. It is made by taking fat or vegetable oil through a chemical process called transesterification, which refines the oil to undergo other chemical processes to be able to insure proper performance. Biodiesel also meets the 1990 Clean Air Act specifications and is legally registered with the Environmental Protection Agency for public production and consumption. In addition, according to AZ BioDiesel, it is the only alternative fuel to have fully completed the health effects testing requirements of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments.

    While AZ BioDiesel, a corporate production facility in Chandler has been making preparations for years to open up sales for the general public, other fuel-efficient savvy individuals have already been researching and producing biodiesel fuel for themselves for quite some time.

    A local Mesa resident, Tom Kokaliares, has been researching biofuel for over two years. His 2006 GMC Sierra 2500 with a Duramax diesel motor and Allison transmission along with his son Kyle’s 2007 Dodge Ram with a Cummins diesel motor, otherwise categorized as “gas hogs”, have actually been contributing to a cleaner environment. Kokaliares and his sons have taken advantage of the benefits of biodiesel for nine months now, as they have researched it enough to produce it in their own garage.

    “Using wasted vegetable oil burns cleaner with less pollution than diesel,” Kokaliares said.

    Kokaliares and his son Kyle go to local restaurants in Mesa every two weeks to pick up left over vegetable oil free of charge in bulk containers to process it for fuel in their trucks. They usually filter about 90 gallons at a time and claim they only fill up their tanks with petroleum diesel from an actual gas station once per month.

    “Biodiesel is a win-win,” he said. “It’s better for the environment and cheaper for both the consumer and the processor.”

    Kokaliares, who is also a licensed aviator pilot and owner of his own private plane, said that biodiesel fuel can actually be made for planes as well, but it is being worked on.

    “Aviation fuel requires a different chemical process,” Kokaliares said.

    Not only has biodiesel been proven better for the environment and provides for better fuel efficiency, but it may also implement tax breaks for consumers in the near future.

    Melissa Randazzo, a public information officer for the City of Mesa said, “The city does not get tax breaks on biodiesel, but public individuals do.”

    Likewise, Mesa does not impose any taxes for biodiesel producers either, according to Pete Scarafiotti from the City of Mesa.

    Even though gas prices seem to be eeking their way down statewide, it is safe to say that Americans hope for the benefits of biodiesel to keep progressing and provide for more advancement for alternative energy fuel production to become mainstream.

    According to the National Biodiesel Board’s most recent statistics, production in the U.S. has significantly increased from 500 thousand gallons in 1999 to 250 million gallons in 2006. For more information on AZ BioDiesel visit azbiodiesel.com or call (480) 344-1480.

    Guest Article submitted by Anais G. Durney
    Student, Arizona State University


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    Friday, December 05, 2008

    TGen researcher remembered; benefit in her honor

    TGen researcher remembered; benefit in her honor



    12-03-2008

    PHOENIX, Ariz. – Dec. 3, 2008 –– On today’s anniversary of the passing of TGen researcher Alana Lysholm-Bernacchi, her husband Brett Bernacchi remembers her and discusses the importance of the upcoming benefit in her honor.

    The first Alana's Champs 5K, a run and walk to benefit brain cancer research at the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen), is set for Dec. 6 at Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza.

    Alana was a neurogenomics researcher for the Translational Genomics Research Institute. She studied hearing loss, Down syndrome and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as Lou Gehrig's Disease. A north Phoenix resident, she died as the result of a brain tumor on Dec. 3, 2007.

    Brett Bernacchi was interviewed by TGen senior science writer Steve Yozwiak:

    - How did you and Alana first meet? And how did you re-connect?

    Alana and I met by chance in Grand Forks, N.D. We were teenagers traveling with our respective teams and we both happened to have functions there the same weekend. Her ballet school stayed at the same hotel as my wrestling team. We met, talked, shared a laugh, and some breakfast on the morning we left to go to our respective homes. She gave me her address then went back home to Minneapolis, Minn. I was living in Winnipeg. We started a long-distance relationship through letters and an occasional phone call. We wound up together, but unfortunately at 21 she was ready to take on the world and we broke up.

    We spoke intermittently for the next few years then fell out of contact. About 2001, I found an article about her health struggles that was printed in a newspaper from her hometown. I was concerned, so I phoned her father to find out how she was doing. He never told her that I had called. Again, in the spring of 2005, I found another article from her hometown paper. This time it reported a "recurrence" of her brain tumor. Doctors had given her less than six months to live, but she miraculously began to heal despite their grim prognosis. The article was published approximately only two months before I actually found it. She was more than seven months from the prognosis and 'healing spiritually and mentally' according to the writer. This time I reached out to Alana after finding her email address at the University of Michigan, where she had been continuing her PhD research.

    She emailed back within an hour. We spoke on the phone and it was as if only a day had passed since the last time we were together and happy. In actuality, it had been more than 10 years since we had spoken. We were married in Sedona in the fall that same year.

    - What do you miss the most about her?

    Her amazing smile.

    - What would you like the public to know most about Alana's work here at TGen?

    Her work as a scientist was exceptional and the passion in which she performed it was undeniable.

    - What do you think she would make of the upcoming event named in her memory?

    The event is her "gift" to all of us. She would have gladly given her life if it meant she would be helping to save others from pain and suffering. Alana loved life and all those who live it.

    Thank you for your work in helping to make the inaugural Alana's Champs a success.

    *

    If you go

    Where: Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza, just east of the Arizona State Capitol, 1700 W. Washington St., Phoenix.

    When: Dec. 6. Event-day registration starts at 7 a.m.; the 5-kilometer run starts at 8 a.m.; the 5K walk at 8:10 a.m.; and the 1-mile run/walk at 8:45 a.m., followed by a kids dash and raffle.

    Participation Fees: -- Ages 13 and up: $25 pre-registration; $30 on Dec. 6.
    -- Ages 5-12: $10.
    -- Children ages 4 and younger are free.

    Details: Please visit the TGen Foundation at www.helptgen.org or call Erin Massey, assistant director of development, at 602-343-8470.

    *

    About TGen
    The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life changing results. Research at TGen is focused on helping patients with diseases such as cancer, neurological disorders and diabetes. TGen is on the cutting edge of translational research where investigators are able to unravel the genetic components of common and complex diseases. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities, TGen believes it can make a substantial contribution to the efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process.



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    Thursday, December 04, 2008

    TGen and international team identify gene that could put people at risk for age-related hearing loss

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    TGen and international team identify gene that could put people at risk for age-related hearing loss


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    12-02-2008

    PHOENIX, Ariz. – Dec. 2, 2008 – Researchers at the Translational Genomics Research Institute, working with scientists from Los Angeles and Belgium, have identified a gene that could help explain why some people lose their hearing as they age.

    In a study released online today in the journal Human Molecular Genetics, researchers identified a gene that could help lead to the treatment of presbycusis, or age-related hearing loss, which accounts for 30 percent of all deafness.

    “Finding the genetic causes of age-related hearing loss could lead to treatments that would bring relief to millions of people worldwide who now suffer from social isolation, depression and even cognitive impairment as a result of not being able to properly understand what others are saying,’’ said Dr. Matthew Huentelman, an Investigator in TGen’s Neurogenomics Division and one of the scientific paper’s lead authors.

    Researchers at TGen, the Los Angeles-based House Ear Institute, and the University of Antwerp, Belgium, said they believe the paper’s findings represent important and significant progress in the efforts to discover the origins of presbycusis.

    “This is the first ever and largest genome-wide association study for age-related hearing loss,” said Dr. Rick Friedman, another lead author who also is a Principal Investigator at the House Ear Institute and surgeon at the House Clinic.

    The study uncovered several genes, but one gene stands out and is believed to put people at risk for hearing loss as they age. The research team believes a common variant in the GRM7 gene may be associated with susceptibility to glutamate excitotoxicity and hearing loss. It is the overexpression of glutamate that causes damage to the inner and outer hair cells in the inner ear leading to age-related hearing loss.

    “We have known for a long time that genes play an important role in presbycusis. But until now, genetic research has lagged behind compared to other important diseases,” said Guy Van Camp, director of the Hereditary Deafness Laboratory and professor, University of Antwerp, Belgium. “The identification of GRM7 is a very exciting result, as it may provide insights in the development of the disease.”

    The study participants were Caucasian, ages 53 to 67, and the samples were collected at eight centers in six nations throughout Europe from population registries or audiological consultations. The team of investigators analyzed the samples and identified genetic risks. In the lab, the research team scored markers across the entire genome of more than 2,000 samples.

    Friedman said the next step is developing a laboratory model to test pharmaceuticals for possible treatment of presbycusis in the future.

    # # #

    About TGen The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life changing results. Research at TGen is focused on helping patients with diseases such as cancer, neurological disorders and diabetes. TGen is on the cutting edge of translational research where investigators are able to unravel the genetic components of common and complex diseases. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities, TGen believes it can make a substantial contribution to the efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. For more information, visit: www.tgen.org.

    Contact: Steve Yozwiak o. 602-343-8704 c. 602-620-4749 TGen Senior Science Writer syozwiak@tgen.org

    About House Ear Institute The House Ear Institute (HEI) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to advancing hearing science through research and education to improve quality of life. HEI scientists investigate the cellular and molecular causes of hearing loss and related auditory disorders as well as neurological processes pertaining to the human auditory system and the brain. Our researchers also explore technology advancements to improve auditory implants, hearing aids, diagnostic techniques and rehabilitation tools. The Institute shares its knowledge with the scientific and medical communities as well as the general public through its education and outreach programs. For more information about HEI please call (800) 388-8612 or visit www.hei.org.

    Contact: Kirsten Holguin o. 213-353-7081 c. 805-796-0038 House Ear Institute kholguin@hei.org

    About the Hereditary Deafness Laboratory, University of Antwerp, Belgium This research group, headed by Prof. Guy Van Camp, has localized and identified many genes for different forms of hereditary deafness over the last 15 years. Most of this work was based on purely genetic forms of deafness. Over the last couple of years, this laboratory has started with the analysis of complex forms of hearing impairment such as presbycusis and noise-induced hearing impairment. These types of hearing impairment are caused by a complex interplay between environmental factors, such as noise or exposure to toxic substances or medication, and genes that make people susceptible. The laboratory has collected large numbers of samples, and has developed new methodologies for the analysis of these diseases.




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