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New Pharmacogenomic Approach: 454 Life Sciences and Perlegen to Collaborate in Drug Response Sequencing Study

BRANFORD, Conn., Oct. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- 454 Life Sciences, a Roche company, and Perlegen Sciences, Inc., today announced a collaboration to conduct large scale genetic re-sequencing in hundreds of DNA samples collected by Perlegen from humans with specific responses to a widely prescribed class of drug. The goal of the collaboration will be to determine whether sufficient genetic variation can be identified and validated to create a clinical test that will predict how people might respond to this class of medicines.

Pursuant to the terms of the agreement, Perlegen and 454 will each re- sequence select portions of the genome within each sample, using 454 Sequencing(TM) technology and DNA amplified with Perlegen's proprietary sample preparation and amplification technologies. The parties' data analysis teams will jointly study the combined results to determine how significant a role variation in genetic sequence plays in patient response to this drug class.

"We are pleased to be working with 454 in this landmark pharmacogenomic study that combines 454's exceptional next generation sequencing technology with Perlegen's expertise in defining genetic variation on a carefully selected sample set," commented Bryan Walser, MD, Chief Executive Officer of Perlegen Sciences. "This study holds the promise to improve therapeutic outcomes for a vast number of patients."

"454 Sequencing, with long, highly-accurate reads, is ideally suited for a project of this scale and importance," commented Christopher McLeod, President and CEO of 454. "We look forward to partnering with Perlegen in the quest to solve this and other critically important medical problems."

454 Life Sciences develops and commercializes the innovative Genome Sequencer(TM) system for ultra-high-throughput DNA sequencing. Specific applications include de novo sequencing and re-sequencing of whole genomes, metagenomics, RNA analysis, and targeted sequencing of DNA regions of interest. The hallmarks of 454 Sequencing(TM) are its simple, unbiased sample preparation and long, highly accurate sequence reads, including paired reads. 454 Sequencing technology has enabled many peer-reviewed studies in diverse research fields such as: cancer research, infectious diseases research, drug discovery, marine biology, anthropology, paleontology, and many more.

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About Roche and the Roche Diagnostics Division

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world's leading research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. As the world's biggest biotech company and an innovator of products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to improving people's health and quality of life. Roche is the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics and drugs for cancer and transplantation, a market leader in virology and active in other major therapeutic areas such as autoimmune diseases, inflammation, metabolism and central nervous system. In 2006 sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled 33.3 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of 8.7 billion Swiss francs. Roche employs roughly 75,000 worldwide and has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and Chugai. Roche's Diagnostics Division offers a uniquely broad product portfolio and supplies a wide array of innovative testing products and services to researchers, physicians, patients, hospitals and laboratories world-wide. For further information, please visit our website at

About Perlegen Sciences

Perlegen's mission is to discover and commercialize genetic variations that can make a difference to patients and physicians. The company's expertise is in understanding human genetic variation within and across diverse patient populations and in conducting studies aimed at identifying those variations that are predictive of drug response, both toxicity and efficacy. For more information about the company and its technologies, visit Perlegen's website at

For more information, please contact

Roche Diagnostics GmbH

Dr. Burkhard Ziebolz

Phone +49 (8856) 60 4830


Russo Partners, LLC

Tony Russo

(212) 845-4251

Russo Partners, LLC

Benjamin Carmichael

(212) 845-4242

SOURCE 454 Life Sciences
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