Tag Archives: illumina

A world map of High- Throughput Sequencers.

Just a quick post to report a small but really interesting project I found sifting through the Internet. Since a few years, the web is filling up with maps of different types. In the semantics of contemporary web language, maps represent the most chosen way to describe global- sized phenomena, and the development of new interactive and customizable maps software is enhancing up this trend. I would say that this “map mania” is affecting genomics too, but it wouldn’t make much sense, since genetics and genomics were already really familiar with maps years before any web trend. Anyways, if you already could find a map of the best places to pick up a girl in the world, or a map indicating the most paid job in any single US State, now you can also check the world wide distribution of NGS technologies. Omicsmaps.com shows a very detailed world map of High- throughput Sequencers. You can search through the institutes hosting an NGS by sequencer category (5, HiSeq, Illumina GA2…), jump directly to a chosen country and report the ones you know and are missing.

Just a couple of updates. I am writing my thesis, so this blog will slow down till winter holidays. I really would like to mention how looks depressing to me the NGS map of Italy, but I will save you from my complaints. Anyways, I am working on a post to explain the situation of research and knowledge politics in Italy. I am also working on the podcast and it will be ready in a couple of weeks. Stay tuned. Or better: PLEASE, try to stay as tuned as you can.

Illumina explains why patents are killing culture and research.

I should recover an old press release, dating to the 90s, that announced the intention of some japanese businessmen to patent pizza. I am not joking. Since no one thought it before, they considered the idea to patent pizza and claim the royalties to any single restaurant in the world. They have obviously failed after a rather zippy protest of Italian public opinion. The story I am gonna tell today looks quite similar, since the intent to patent biological cloud computing is not less insane. Illumina, the “large and in charge” biotechnology firm who brought mass sequencing to common use, claims the paternity of cloud bioinformatics, as you can see on this Google Patents entry. In a few words, the company affirms to have invented a way to collect and analyze biological data in the cloud. I think that Richard Holland hits the spot in his article on EagleGenomics, the definition of what they claim they have invented is really broad and it could include any kind of bionformatics- oriented application or method. I wonder if they will sue T-Coffee for letting the users to save the alignments results on Dropbox, or the major databases for including a data storage. How many future applications will be charged? How many project will fail for legal reasons?

The real problem with patents is mostly cultural and philosophical. Patents are killing culture, science and innovation. In a very typical neo- liberist mentality, control, exclusion and corporations privileges are the main way in making profits. The first aim is not investing in new ideas, but being the first and the only one in doing this. And there are two ways to do it: be faster or cause the others to be slower to the point to prevent them to run. And the latter, is always the easier choice. Research is thus no more a matter of innovation, ideas and hard work, but a question for lawyers and legal technicism. This is the transposition of the principles of financial speculation to Science.

And as happens to the economy, what we would really need is a democratic governance. A set of laws and practices to guarantee the public access to knowledge and scientific production preventing exclusionary policies. We must admit, for first, that Science needs democracy. As many people can access and modify the information, advances and innovation come faster, and everyone can easily quantify the advantages of this. Kinda obvious, to me.

Biotech Corporations: Illumina announces NextBio acquisition.

I republish almost on real time the announcement of one of the biggest transactions in the biotech corporate world in 2013. Right about three minutes ago, the headquarters of Illumina announced the acquiring of NextBio, leader in the field of biological BigData services. Illumina, founded in 1998 and accounted for more than 300 millions dollars of revenue, will define the acquisition within the end of October. It follows the official post from Illumina website.

SAN DIEGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Oct. 28, 2013– Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN) today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Santa Clara-based NextBio, a leader in clinical and genomic informatics. NextBio’s powerful big-data platforms aggregate and analyze large quantities of phenotypic and genomic data for research and clinical applications. With the addition of NextBio’s platform upon completion of the acquisition, Illumina will be able to offer customers enterprise level bioinformatics solutions that accelerate the discovery of new associations between the human genome and disease, and ultimately, enable the application of those discoveries within healthcare.

“This agreement with NextBio demonstrates Illumina’s unwavering commitment to drive the adoption of sequencing in new markets and vastly improve the genomic information workflow,” said Jay Flatley, President and CEO of Illumina. “NextBio enables the classification and aggregation of phenotypic and clinical data within a single environment and allows analysis of that data at unprecedented speed and scale. The combination of Illumina’s BaseSpace cloud computing environment for next-generation sequencing with NextBio’s platform for integrating patient data will allow us to deliver solutions that seamlessly integrate the entire workflow from sample to result.”

NextBio’s platform allows customers to quickly compare their experimental results against thousands of published and private data sets by means of a unique correlation engine, which pre-computes billions of significant connections between disparate data elements and helps discover new associations. NextBio Clinical, which in 2012 passed an independent HIPAA audit, is designed for seamless integration with existing clinical and research systems. Backed by highly scalable Software as a Service (SaaS) enterprise technology, it is capable of analyzing petabytes of data.

NextBio’s database platforms are currently used by researchers and clinicians in more than 50 commercial and academic institutions. NextBio will be integrated into Illumina’s newly formed Enterprise Informatics business under the leadership of Nick Naclerio, SVP of Corporate and Venture Development and General Manager ofEnterprise Informatics. NextBio co-founder Ilya Kupershmidt and Chief Technology Officer Satnam Alag will continue to provide scientific and technical leadership as part of the new business unit.

Illumina is confirming its 2013 financial guidance provided on October 21, 2013. The transaction is expected to close by the end of October.

Original article:  http://investor.illumina.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=121127&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1869001&highlight=