454 Life Sciences, Cogenics, and Limagrain to Jointly Develop Solutions for Crop SNP Discovery with Next Generation Sequencing

Partners Will Co-Develop Genomic Complexity Reduction Methods for Crop Genomes / Initial Study to Focus on Wheat Genome
(PresseBox) (Branford, USA, ) Life Sciences, a company of Roche, today announced that they will support Cogenics® a subsidiary of Clinical Data, Inc., and Limagrain Verneuil Holding (LVH), a subsidiary of the Limagrain Group, in the development of solutions enabling large scale crop SNP discovery projects. Limagrain aims to improve certain feed crops through the selection and cross breeding of desirable characteristics that occur in natural variants of each species. Using the next-generation technology of 454 Sequencing, Cogenics and 454 Life Sciences will provide a solution for the discovery of genomic variations enabling the selection procedure. A first large-scale application will focus on wheat, with additional crop species to follow.

Cogenics will develop a genome complexity reduction assay, an experimental approach that selects the same gene-rich portion of a specific crop genome across multiple variants of the species. Cogenics will work in close concert with 454 Life Sciences to sequence a total of 2Gb of the wheat genome on the Genome Sequencer FLX System.

This is the first and key step of a two-stage process for identifying the molecular markers that correlate with the desired characteristics, and will be conducted by a unit of Cogenics in France. Cogenics believes that it will deploy this complexity reduction assay for other groups going forward as it becomes an important part of the solution-oriented services portfolio of Cogenics. The second stage requires large scale genotyping and will be managed by Limagrain. With this approach, the combination of the desired characteristics into new variants can be significantly accelerated.

"Since Cogenics installed its next-generation 454 System in the spring of 2007, it has worked with a large number of academic, biotech, and industrial customers," said Paul Tomlin, Director of European Operations at Cogenics. "These customers rely on Cogenics for its value-based service offerings, particularly in combination with additional upstream and downstream processing capabilities. Cogenics has taken the next-generation 454 System, and in combination with its expertise in genomics services and informatics, completed enhanced bacterial genome, cDNA, BAC, small RNA, metagenomics & human mutation discovery projects. The project with Limagrain and 454 Life Sciences is a textbook example of the value our team delivers, and we look forward to helping advance the field of crop-related SNP discovery, which will enable complete genome analysis of important crop species."

"Limagrain has been working for several years now with leading technology providers to apply large scale genotyping as a core component of its selection process," said Jean-Pierre Martinant, head of the Riom, France-based genotyping facility of the Limagrain Verneuil Holding. "We are excited to deploy next generation sequencing with Cogenics, and believe that this approach will significantly enhance our ability to accelerate the large scale genotyping campaigns required to meet the goals of this project. This project will further the value we bring to our clients and we work with Cogenics because of the expertise and commitment they bring to this area."

For more information on 454 Sequencing, visit www.roche-applied-science.com/... sequencing.

About Cogenics

Cogenics, a division of Clinical Data, offers nearly 20 years of experience as a trusted provider of the broadest range of pharmacogenomics and molecular biology services available globally. Cogenics provides integrated services for nucleic acid extraction, genotyping, sequencing, QPCR, and gene expression, as well as serving as a biorepository, for both research and regulated environments: GLP, cGMP and CLIA. Cogenics combines operations from the acquisitions of Genaissance Pharmaceuticals, Lark Technologies (US & UK), Icoria, and Genome Express (France). Cogenics most recently acquired Epidauros Biotechnologie AG, of Benried, Germany, adding Epidauros' expertise in genetic biomarker discovery and fast-growing pharmacogenomics services business to its portfolio. Customers of Cogenics include some of the world's most respected pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, agencies of the US National Institutes of Health, leading government and academic researchers in the international life science community, and major agricultural companies and agencies. For more information, please visit www.cogenics.com.

About Clinical Data, Inc.

Clinical Data, Inc. is a global biotechnology company unlocking the potential of molecular discovery, From Targeted Science to Better Healthcare(TM) . Its PGxHealth(TM) division focuses on proprietary biomarker and pharmacogenetic test development as well as targeted therapeutics to help predict drug safety and efficacy, thereby reducing health care costs and improving clinical outcomes. Its Cogenics(TM) division provides genomics services to both research and regulated environments. Through these divisions, Clinical Data is leveraging advances in molecular discovery to provide tangible benefits for patients, doctors, scientists and health plans worldwide. Visit the company's website at www.clda.com for more information.

About Limagrain

Limagrain is a farmers-owned international group specializing in plant breeding and plant valorization. Based near Clermont-Ferrand, France, Limagrain, operating through subsidiaries in more than 30 countries, has revenue of more than € 1 billion and spends annually more than € 100 million on research and development. Through its subsidiary, Vilmorin & Cie, Limagrain is the 4th largest international seed group. Vilmorin is the European leader in field seed and a worldwide leader in vegetable seed and home garden seed products. With Limagrain Cereal Ingredients, Limagrain is the European leader for functional cereal flours. With Jacquet, Limagrain is a leader in the French sliced bread market. Limagrain believes that partnership is an essential way to increase its long term development capabilities. For more information, please visit www.limagrain.com.

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