DNAPrint initiates new campaigns

DNAPrint genomics (Sarasota, Florida) reported a new corporate marketing and product branding campaign focused on the company's four markets – pharmacogenomics and test/drug combinations, forensics technology for law enforcement, consumer family heritage tests and genotyping services for pharmaceutical companies and universities.

"We have made innovative changes in our corporate image and marketing approach, featuring new product and service logos and redesigned marketing materials for our key genetic products and services," said President and CEO Richard Gabriel.

The company said this new campaign represents another major step in its effort to market its products and services to a larger international market.

The company's first theranostic product (drug/test combination) is PT-401, a "Super EPO" (erythropoietin) dimer protein drug for treatment of anemia in renal dialysis patients (end stage renal disease). Currently in preclinical development, PT-401 will be targeted to patients with a genetic profile indicating their propensity to have the best clinical response.

Firm cites confirmation of findings

GenoMed (St. Louis) reported independent confirmation of an observation the company originally made in 2002 that prostate cancer behaves differently in white and black men. In black men, angiotensin II promotes prostate cancer, and ACE inhibitors are protective. But in white men, angiotensin II protects against prostate cancer, and ACE inhibitors promote prostate cancer.

In 2002, GenoMed published a report that activity of angiotensin I-converting enzyme was positively associated with prostate cancer and PSA levels in African-American men, but inversely associated with prostate cancer and PSA levels in Caucasians. A subsequent paper published by the company last summer indicated that ACE inhibitors were found to increase the odds of prostate cancer in a predominantly white male Veterans Affairs hospital population by a factor of 4.7.

GenoMed said that result was confirmed by Professor Marek Pawlikowski and his group at the University of Lodz in Poland in work published in late 2004, of which the company only recently became aware.

David Moskowitz, MD, GenoMed's CEO and chief medical officer, said, "Dr. Pawlikowski's group . . . found in vitro exactly what we found in vivo using genomic epidemiologic and pharmacoepidemiologic data in human patient populations: angiotensin II surprisingly inhibited the growth of the Caucasian man's prostate cancer cells."

Moskowitz added, "The public health message is quite clear: every white man on an ACE inhibitor should be more closely monitored for prostate cancer with a PSA level every six to nine months. On the other hand, every black man with prostate cancer should consider taking an ACE inhibitor to slow down growth of the tumor."

GenoMed's focus is on improving patient outcomes by identifying the molecular pathways that cause disease.

Siemens, Xilinx in collaboration

Xilinx (San Jose, California), a supplier of programmable logic, and Siemens Medical Solutions (Malvern, Pennsylvania), entered a collaboration that is expected to result in what the companies called the "world's most innovative" 3-D medical imaging solutions. Siemens has selected Xilinx as its FPGA (field programmable gate array) supplier in the development of its next-generation, 3-D image-processing platform, which will be used in future image-processing products.

Siemens also plans to offer the technology as an imaging development platform solution to enable similar applications throughout the industry.

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