• Compugen (Tel Aviv, Israel) reported the discovery and experimental verification of CGEN-327, a novel molecular biomarker candidate for the diagnosis of ovarian cancer. CGEN-327 is a previously unknown splice variant of the HE4 (Human Epididymis Protein 4) gene, which is a known biomarker for ovarian cancer. The company also said that it has entered into a research and license option agreement for the product candidate with an unidentified diagnostic company. Patent coverage for this discovery is being pursued by Compugen. VP of R&D Anat Cohen-Dayag said, "This is an excellent example of Compugen's discovery on demand' capabilities. In this case, we were approached by a leading company developing and commercializing immunoassay panels for rapid diagnosis of challenging diseases. Their specific interest was to determine whether any unknown splice variants exist for this known biomarker for ovarian cancer, an objective with a high level of industry interest and past research activity."

Diagnosoft (Morrisville, North Carolina) reported its newest software solution, Diagnosoft SENC. Strain-encoding, or SENC, is a new MRI analysis technique that will help physicians measure regional contraction, or relaxation, of the heart's myocardium. Diagnosoft SENC enables quantification of data to improve diagnosis and guide monitoring and treatment of coronary artery disease. Most cardiac MRI procedures require patients to hold their breath. However, SENC images can be acquired in a fraction of a second, mapping regional function with unprecedented speed, so it can be used in combination with tests and maneuvers that allow patients to breathe normally. That means SENC is suitable for stress testing of cardiac function, as well as other diagnostic tests.

• OraSure Technologies (Bethlehem, Pennsylvania) said that the FDA has approved its request for 12-month shelf life from the date of manufacture for its OraQuick Advance Rapid HIV-1/2 Antibody Test. The FDA approval is based on enhancements made by OraSure to the manufacturing process and product packaging of its OraQuick Advance test, and represents a six-month increase in shelf life versus current product available on the market. OraQuick Avance is a rapid point-of-care test that can detect antibodies to both HIV-1 and HIV-2 in 20 minutes, using oral fluid, fingerstick or venipuncture whole blood or plasma specimens.