[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 21-Jul-2011
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Contact: Lei Su
BGI-Marketing@genomics.cn
86-075-525-283-805
Beijing Genomics Institute

Exonhit and BGI announce successful completion of a promising next-generation sequencing project

July 21, 2011 – Exonhit (Alternext: ALEHT), a biotech company focused on personalized medicine, and BGI, the world's largest genome organization, are pleased to announce the successful completion of a project dedicated to expanding Exonhit's Genome Wide SpliceArray™ to an additional strategic preclinical animal model species.

To answer the need for a comprehensive understanding of gene deregulation and the expanding interest in developing biomarkers and molecular diagnostic tests for complex diseases, Exonhit and BGI decided to leverage their technology and know-how by combining the complementary features of massive parallel sequencing and Exonhit's proprietary SpliceArray™ platform.

"Combining BGI's next-generation sequencing's ability with the profiling efficiency of Exonhit unique SpliceArray™ platform to discover new transcript content will enable a better understanding of the biology contributing to the onset and progression of disease. This new powerful combination will facilitate the rapid discovery, development and commercialization of the most relevant therapeutics, biomarkers and molecular diagnostics. We look forward to working with BGI as a preferred partner on future discovery projects," commented Matthew Pando, Ph.D., Executive Vice President, Therapeutics at Exonhit.

"There is a high need for biomarker discovery as Pharma and Biotech players search for prognostic and predictive biomarkers in animal models, for designing clinical trials and developing companion diagnostics," said Zifei Yang, Director of Pharma Business Development at BGI. "BGI Europe is pleased to partner with Exonhit to leverage BGI next-generation sequencing technology with Exonhit's SpliceArray™ platform."

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About Exonhit's SpliceArray™ platform

Exonhit's SpliceArray™ platform is a patented microarray design that incorporates a specific probe configuration, enabling an exhaustive monitoring of RNA splice variants in human, mouse and rat. The Human Genome Wide SpliceArray™ monitors known and predicted alternative RNA splicing events in close to 21,000 human genes and is used in the Company's biomarker and target discovery process.

RNA splicing represents a key regulatory mechanism of gene expression. One single gene can be transcribed into several splice variants encoding proteins exhibiting different biological functions. Current predictions suggest that as many as 80% of human genes exhibit some form of alternative splicing. Given the large contribution of splice variants to the complexity of the human transcriptome and the high density of disease-causing mutations that occur in splicing-related sequences, the monitoring of alterations in alternatively spliced transcripts represents not only a source of potential drug targets, but also a biomarkers discovery engine.

About BGI

BGI (formerly known as Beijing Genomics Institute) was founded in 1999 and has since become the largest genomic organization in the world. With a focus on research and applications in the healthcare, agriculture, conservation and bio-energy fields, BGI has a proven track record of innovative, high-profile research which has generated over 178 publications in top-tier journals such as Nature and Science. BGI's distinguished achievements have made a great contribution to the development of genomics in both China and the world. Our goal is to make leading-edge genomics highly accessible to the global research community by leveraging industry's best technology, economies of scale and expert bioinformatics resources. BGI and its affiliates, BGI Americas and BGI Europe, have established partnerships and collaborations with leading academic and government research institutions, as well as global biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. At BGI, we have built the infrastructure and scientific expertise to enable our customers and collaborators to quickly migrate from samples to discovery. For more information, visit www.bgisequence.com

BGI's NGS platform consists of ABI Solid, Illumina Hiseq and Ion Torrent systems that work upstream of BGI's super-computer processors. BGI proprietary technology and know-how allowed to remove some of NGS traditional bottle-necks, such as data acquisition, handling and processing. BGI Europe has been operating in Copenhagen since May 2010 and has been working with several Pharma and Biotech players in Europe

About Exonhit

Exonhit (Alternext: ALEHT) is a biotech company, focused on personalized medicine, which develops targeted innovative therapeutic and diagnostic products, in oncology and Alzheimer's disease. Exonhit has a balanced investment strategy with internal development programs and strategic collaborations, in particular with Allergan.

Exonhit is headquartered in Paris, France and has U.S. offices in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The Company is listed on Alternext of NYSE Euronext Paris and is part of the NYSE Alternext OSEO innovation index. For more information, please visit http://www.exonhit.com.

Disclaimer

This press release contains elements that are not historical facts including, without limitation, certain statements on future expectations and other forward-looking statements. Such statements are based on management's current views and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those anticipated.

In addition, Exonhit, its shareholders, and its affiliates, directors, officers, advisors and employees have not verified the accuracy of, and make no representations or warranties in relation to, statistical data or predictions contained in this press release that were taken or derived from third party sources or industry publications, and such statistical data and predictions are used in this press release for information purposes only.

Finally, this press release may be drafted in the French and English languages. In an event of differences between the texts, the French language version shall prevail.

Contacts for Media & Investors

Exonhit
Corinne Hoff
+33 1 58 05 47 04
corinne.hoff@exonhit.com

BGI
Zifei Yang
+32 (0)489769295
yangzifei@genomics.cn



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