BRANFORD, Conn., 7 May 2007 – 454 Life Sciences Corporation announced a collaboration today with Malaysian Genomics Resource Centre (MGRC) based upon applying high-speed DNA sequencing and bioinformatics technologies for the characterization of tropical organisms and diseases.
454 Life Sciences and MGRC will work together on applying the newly launched high-throughput Genome Sequencer FLX System™ (GS FLX) to spearhead the adoption and wide-spread deployment of cutting-edge genomics and bioinformatics projects in Malaysia. The collaboration was formally announced at a signing ceremony at the BIO International Convention in Boston, MA. The ceremony was officiated by the Honourable Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak.
“Malaysia is investing significant resources in establishing itself as a regional hub for biotechnology research and industrialization,” said Christopher McLeod, President and CEO of 454 Life Sciences. “We are delighted and excited to be involved as a partner with MGRC to help realize the full potential of genomics in Malaysia.”
454 Life Sciences and MGRC will be collaborating on a number of high-profile projects from the Malaysian academic community. Specific examples that have already been earmarked include the sequencing of microbes with biotechnological and medical applications, as well as large scale-characterization of diseases that are prevalent in Malaysia and the region as a whole.
Munirah Hamid, Executive Director of MGRC commented, “Genomics and bioinformatics have become fundamental, must-have technologies for advancing biological research. The 454 Life Sciences DNA sequencing platforms have enabled previously impractical projects to be pursued due to their combination of high accuracy, high throughput and lower cost of DNA sequencing.”
MGRC services are provided with the support of Malaysian Biotechnology Corporation (BiotechCorp), an agency under the purview of the Malaysian Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation. BiotechCorp’s objective is to support and accelerate growth of the Malaysian biotechnology industry.
About 454 Life Sciences
454 Life Sciences develops and commercializes novel instrumentation for high-throughput DNA sequencing. Specific applications include whole-genome sequencing, RNA analysis and ultra-deep sequencing of target genes. The hallmarks of 454 Sequencing™ are its simple, unbiased sample preparation and massively parallel sequencing, which makes large-scale scientific projects feasible and more affordable. 454 Sequencing and the Genome Sequencer 20 System won The Wall Street Journal’s top Innovation Award in 2005 and received an R&D 100 Editor’s Choice Award as one of the most technologically significant products in 2006. The 454 Sequencing Center offers sequencing services directly to customers on a fee for service basis. Genome Sequencer systems are exclusively distributed for 454 Life Sciences by Roche Applied Science, a division of Roche Diagnostics. For additional information, please visit http://www.454.com.
454 Life Sciences Corporation is a majority-owned subsidiary of CuraGen Corporation. In March 2007, 454 Life Sciences, Roche Holdings, Inc. and an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Roche Holdings entered into an Agreement and Plan of Merger whereby 454 Life Sciences will become an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Roche Holdings if the merger is completed. The merger is expected to become effective in the second quarter of 2007 contingent upon regulatory approvals and certain closing conditions. For additional information regarding the merger, please refer to CuraGen’s Current Report on Form 8-K filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission on April 2, 2007.