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H3 Biomedicine and BGI Announce Collaboration to Develop and Share Crucial Cancer Genomic Sequencing Data

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. and SHENZHEN, China, March 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- H3 Biomedicine Inc., a biopharmaceutical company specializing in the discovery and development of oncology treatments, and BGI, the largest genomics organization in the world, jointly announced today that they have entered into a partnership to sequence and publish genomic data from pre-clinical cancer models. This research, which aims to identify and validate recurrent gene mutations that are potential targets for drug therapies, is crucial for the entire oncology drug discovery industry. Consistent with their respective ongoing commitments to open-access research, as well as BGI's distinguished history of published, collaborative research, H3 and BGI will release the cancer genomic data to the global research community upon completion of data analysis. 

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"We truly believe that genomic information generated from patient samples or material derived thereof should be shared with the scientific community. As a matter of fact, the community has benefited enormously from collaborative efforts like The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and International Cancer Genome Consortium (ICGC)," stated Markus Warmuth, M.D., president and chief executive officer, H3 Biomedicine. "Open access to this information has enabled countless scientific advances, and our intention is to further accelerate oncology drug discovery by releasing the data we generate with BGI. We see this as a significant step in building shared translational oncology platforms that will bring the research community together to deliver new personalized medicines, especially for those people living with cancers for which there are, today, limited treatment options."

Recent advances in human cancer genomics have revealed novel cancer target opportunities that will enable personalized cancer medicine approaches. Many of the identified recurrent gene mutations exist at low frequencies and the information necessary to select relevant pre-clinical models to study these mutations does not exist. Under the partnership announced today, BGI will sequence 250 cancer cell lines via next-generation, whole exome sequencing in this first study. H3 Biomedicine and BGI will jointly analyze the data to deliver a highly curated set of genetically profiled, pre-clinical model information that will help to accelerate drug discovery and development efforts.

Yingrui Li , chief executive officer of BGI Americas, said, "We are pleased to collaborate with H3 Biomedicine, and to have this opportunity to apply our state-of-the-art, next-gen sequencing capabilities and bioinformatics expertise to help advance the discovery of novel cancer drug targets and full-scale pharmacogenomics findings. I believe this partnership will yield significant, valuable genomic information that will lay a solid foundation for developing pre-clinical cancer models and new anticancer drugs to benefit human health. BGI, in keeping with our global legacy of collaborative, published research, including our participation in ICGC, looks forward to partnering with H3 Biomedicine in developing and sharing this genomic data with the international research community."

About H3 Biomedicine Inc.
H3 Biomedicine is a biopharmaceutical company specializing in the discovery and development of oncology treatments. Using modern synthetic chemistry, chemical biology and human genetics, the company seeks to bring the next generation of cancer treatments to market with the goal of improving the lives of patients. H3 Biomedicine is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Visit for more information.

About BGI
BGI was founded in Beijing, China, in 1999 with the mission to become a premier scientific partner for the global research community. The goal of BGI is to make leading-edge genomic science highly accessible, which it achieves through its investment in infrastructure, leveraging the best available technology, economies of scale, and expert bioinformatics resources. BGI, which includes both private non-profit genomic research institutes and sequencing application commercial units, and its affiliates, BGI Americas, headquartered in Cambridge, MA, and BGI Europe, headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, have established partnerships and collaborations with leading academic and government research institutions as well as global biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, supporting a variety of disease, agricultural, environmental, and related applications.

BGI has a proven track record of excellence, delivering results with high efficiency and accuracy for innovative, high-profile research: research that has generated over 200 publications in top-tier journals such as Nature and Science. BGI's many accomplishments include: sequencing one percent of the human genome for the International Human Genome Project, contributing 10 percent to the International Human HapMap Project, carrying out research to combat SARS and German deadly E.coli, playing a key role in the Sino-British Chicken Genome Project, and completing the sequence of the rice genome, the silkworm genome, the first Asian diploid genome, the potato genome, and, more recently, the human Gut Metagenome, as well as a significant proportion of the genomes for the1000 Genomes Project.

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Media Contacts:
Mike Beyer
Sam Brown Inc.
(773) 463-4211

Joyce Peng , Ph.D.
Marketing Director
BGI Americas
(626) 222-5584

Bicheng Yang , Ph.D.
Public Communication Officer
BGI Shenzhen

SOURCE H3 Biomedicine Inc.
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