• 7 May 2007
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Millipore embeds RFID technology in filtration products

Millipore Corporation has announced that it is the first company to successfully integrate Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology with filtration products used to manufacture biopharmaceutical drugs. The new RFID capability will be branded as SMART technology.

By using RFID technology in filtration products, Millipore's customers can increase speed by quickly and reliably retrieving critical information, such as when and how the product was manufactured. Additionally, when the filters are coupled with sensors, RFID can deliver real-time information about product performance and identify which fluids are present during the manufacturing process. This information will help customers to ensure regulatory compliance and make recording and conveying manufacturing data faster and more reliable.

Unlike previous labeling methods such as barcodes, RFID enables customers to automatically document product and process information, eliminates the risk of losing critical information, and provides the ability to rewrite their own information into embedded RFID tags.

"Using RFID technology to record and convey valuable product and process information allows our customers to more efficiently develop and validate key process steps," said Roland Heinrich, vice president, R&D of Millipore's bioprocess division. "In an industry where time-to-market and compliance are crucial, RFID improves the speed and confidence with which critical data is exchanged for these steps."

"This license agreement is a milestone for Tack Smart Filter Technology and confirms the importance of this technology for the worldwide filtration and separation industry," said Eduard de Haan, president of Tack Smart Filter Technology BV. "We are proud to support Millipore to retain its leading position in biopharmaceutical filtration and we expect that this agreement will further boost the interest for this technology in other segments of the filtration and separation industry."


Strand launches Sarchitect for in silico lead optimization

Bangalore-based Strand Life Sciences has launched its SAR modeling and deployment platform Sarchitect. Sarchitect, which addresses the challenge of taking the model building prowess of computational chemists through to decision support in medicinal chemistry, has two editions. First the Designer edition for use by computational scientists, and second Miner for in silico lead optimization by medicinal chemists. Gilead Sciences has signed on as the first customer of Sarchitect.

Dr Eric Jamois, vice president, business development, Strand Life Sciences, said, "Sarchitect addresses fundamental issues in statistical and ADME-Tox modeling such as confidence metrics in predictions and the ability to rebuild or expand existing models. It opens the door to "living" models, which are also better aware of their prediction scope. These steps towards objectivity and transparency are key to the wider deployment of in silico methods in discovery programs."

Sharing his views Dr Swami Swaminathan, senior director, structural chemistry, Gilead, said, "Sarchitect is an easy to implement and useful tool for models, which do not have a direct molecular recognition component. The 'edit & predict' function that is available in Sarchitect is a feature that allows deployment of models early in the projects and allow for a heuristic evolution of the models through the lifetime of the project."


Max Planck Institute takes delivery of Waters Synapt HDMS system

Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry is enhancing its research on neurodegenerative diseases by adding a Waters Synapt High Definition MS (HDMS) system to its research technologies. The Institute's Department of Cellular Biochemistry recently took delivery of the Synapt HDMS System to study the role of proteins in causing brain-wasting diseases including Huntington's Disease.

"Our initial impression of the Synapt HDMS system was of a very powerful two-dimensional separation device. We wanted a system that could measure large intact protein complexes with high accuracy. The ability to additionally separate species by ion mobility greatly enhances the appeal of this system," commented Prof. Ulrich Hartl, director of the institute.

Dr Hartl's research focuses on the understanding of the mechanisms by which molecular chaperones mediate protein folding and inhibit misfolding in neurodegenerative diseases. The Synapt System will analyze the large protein complexes, and their subunit composition, that are involved in such diseases. Prof. Hartl is looking to the Synapt System to give them greater insight into protein folding, assembly, and aggregation pathways by being able to resolve, identify and characterize intermediates based on differences in conformation, something that is nearly impossible to do with current technology.

"We will follow folding and/or aggregation pathways in the presence or absence of chaperone systems in combination with hydrogen or deuterium exchange technology. The Synapt System's Triwave technology for separating ions by their mobility will allow us to characterize our proteins of interest in greater detail than any other mass spectrometry system currently available," Dr Hayer-Hartl explained.

Waters introduced the Synapt HDMS System at the American Society of Mass Spectrometry annual meeting in Seattle in June 2006. It is the first commercially-available mass spectrometer to combine high-efficiency, ion mobility-based measurements and separations with a high-performance orthogonal acceleration time-of-flight mass spectrometer.


AIA organizes AUTOMATION TECH 2007

The Automation Industry Association of India (AIA) organized a cross-sector symposium AUTOMATION TECH 2007 in Mumbai on April 12, 2007. The event was aimed at highlighting the role of industrial automation in enabling quality, consistency, speed, productivity and integration across the value chain, especially as India integrates with the world economy.

In his inaugural address, Dr K Kasturirangan, director, National Institute of Advanced Studies and also a Member of Parliament, spoke about the enabling role of Automation in India's progress. Sharing his vision of national excellence, he urged industry captains and AIA members to engage in collaborative resource sharing.

Industrial automation systems include process automation solutions and equipment that are closely coupled with machines and designed to reliably operate in harsh or hazardous locations. It is this real-time ability to process and communicate, which differentiates industrial automation from traditional IT and telecom technologies. People from automotive, oil and gas, power, engineering and construction, metals and mining, pharmaceutical, warehousing and supply chain sectors participated in the day-long symposium.


Rockwell Automation launches FactoryTalk

Rockwell Automation India has rolled out FactoryTalk, its new suite of software products. FactoryTalk's introduction globally will help the current manufacturing boom in India. The FactoryTalk Information Solution Provider Program will provide more options for manufacturers looking to gain better insight into their manufacturing operations and increase their competitive advantage.

Kevin Roach, vice president, Rockwell Software, Rockwell Automation, said, "With increased demands on manufacturers to improve quality, reduce cost, increase productivity and meet regulatory compliance, the integration of the factory floor with information systems is no longer a luxury. It's a strategic imperative."

He added, "The FactoryTalk Information Solution Provider Program, which we have initiated, will result in an extended network of approved information systems professionals to help manufacturers build successful plant-wide information applications and manufacturing execution systems. Integration of control and information environments continues to be strategic imperative at most manufacturing companies, and this program gives manufacturers across a broad range of industries the resources they need to make their integration efforts successful."

Rockwell Software FactoryTalk has won "Technology of the Year-Integrating Factory Data" in IndustryWeek's Technology and Innovation Awards Program. Through the FactoryTalk Information Solution Provider Program, Rockwell Automation will train and certify information system professionals who have the application, business and vertical market expertise to help companies integrate their control and information environments for better manufacturing performance.


Praj records strong sales growth

Praj Industries has recorded strong growth during the year with total income more than doubling to Rs 616.40 crore (Rs 270 crore in 2005-06) and PBT and PAT more than three times at Rs 110 crore (Rs 32.38 crore) and Rs 86.52 crore (Rs 24.41 crore). Based on this strong performance, the board of directors had declared the second interim dividend of 90 percent in March 2007, which has already been paid. So far, the company has paid an interim divided totaling 135 percent for the year. And now, the board has also proposed a bonus share of 1:1.

Pramod Chaudhari, chairman, said, "This performance is an indication that we are already moving up not only in terms of top line, but also in terms of profitability."

Close on the heels of success in Asia and in Americas, Pramod Chaudhari said, "The company is expected to move to a new trajectory that will enhance its global market share to beyond 10 percent in biofuel technology sector by the turn of the decade. This may involve organic and inorganic growth strategies including acquisitions and overseas JVs and expansion of geographies. Some action has already been initiated in this direction."

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Waters releases new control software

Waters Corporation has released control software that now makes its ACQUITY UltraPerformance LC (UPLC) System compatible with Applied Biosystems/MDS SCIEX mass spectrometry products controlled by Analyst software. In conjunction with Applied Biosystems/MDS SCIEX's release of the latest update to Analyst V1.4.2 LC/MS control software, Waters will now supply and support additional software which provides full support for the ACQUITY UPLC Systems, including Waters nanoACQUITY UPLC System, on Applied Biosystems/MDS SCIEX's mass spectrometry platforms.

It may be recalled that in last August, Waters and Applied Biosystems/MDS SCIEX entered into an agreement for Waters to develop control software for the ACQUITY UPLC System, with support from Applied Biosystems/MDS SCIEX. The new software from Waters is designed to allow scientists to combine Waters UPLC and Applied Biosystems/MDS SCIEX MS technologies and operate them on a single data system. This new level of compatibility is expected to improve laboratory efficiency by giving scientists what they have been asking for: greatly enhanced ease-of-use of the combined technologies.


Waters expands distribution of YMC HPLC columns globally

Waters Corporation has announced the worldwide distribution of the YMC HPLC analytical and preparative column lines,

In expanding the distribution of YMC columns globally, Waters maintains exclusive distribution rights to the YMC column product line in the Americas -North, Central and South America and the Caribbean Islands.

YMC HPLC analytical and preparative columns are available in 27 different chemistries with a wide range of particles and pore sizes, providing comprehensive solutions for the most challenging separations and those that are complementary to Waters branded products.

To support this distribution, and to continue its commitment to customers, Waters is offering scientists a YMC HPLC Columns Applications Notebook, available electronically on the Waters website or in printed form. This notebook is an extensive application database with more than 400 applications to help chromatographers research columns and develop analytical methods.


BioServe receives ISO 9001 and CLIA Certifications

BioServe, headquartered in Laurel, and with presence in Hyderabad, India and provider of a complete 'biomaterial to validated data' genomics solution, has received two certifications - ISO (International Organization for Standardization) 9001 and CLIA (Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act). BioServe's site in India has been certified with ISO 9001.

Rama Modali, president of BioServe, said, "These certifications further validate BioServe's operational and organizational excellence. For the last 15 years, we have delivered services for extracting and analyzing genomic content. Our customers, whether a biopharmaceutical company or a public research institution, have come to expect the highest quality work with reduced project cycle times, along with the ability to overcome challenging business and scientific hurdles. With the ISO and CLIA certifications, our customers can be confident of our continued commitment to providing the highest quality services, products and technology."

ISO is a worldwide federation of national standards adopted by 154 countries and has become an international reference for quality management requirements in business-to-business dealings. CLIA is a regulatory program that sets standards for operating a clinical laboratory in the USA, and it mandates that any laboratory conducting testing on human specimens must be certified to operate in accordance with the federal government's Clinical Laboratory Improvement Act.


GE Healthcare acquires Wave Biotech

GE Healthcare, a unit of General Electric Company, has acquired Wave Biotech LLC, a supplier of innovative disposable manufacturing technologies for the biopharmaceutical industry. The acquisition of Wave Biotech LLC including its subsidiary Wave Europe will allow GE Healthcare to expand its offering of products and services for the manufacture of biopharmaceuticals such as antibodies and vaccines. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Wave Biotech develops and manufactures unique bioreactors, which are designed to replace traditional and more expensive stainless steel tanks and piping. Its equipment are in use in over 300 companies worldwide. Its single use bioreactors are increasingly being used to enable the manufacture of patient-specific cell and gene therapy products.


Bio-Rad, QCI organize quality awareness seminar

Bio-Rad Laboratories in association with the Quality Council of India (QCI) organized a seminar on quality control in diagnostic laboratories. The seminar focused on the need for improving quality for better patient care. The seminar is part of a series of similar workshops that have been held at different cities in the last two years.

Dr Venkatesh Thuppil, who is an advisor to QCI, said, "Laboratories are required to follow quality assurance procedures based on the internationally accepted standards."

Dhiren Wagle, country manager, Bio-Rad Laboratories, said, "The company is working with various regulatory agencies towards its endeavour of promoting quality control practices and spreading awareness on the issue amongst the public at large."

Speaking on behalf of COLA, a global medical laboratory education, consultation, and accreditation organization, Maxfield L Williams said, "It is estimated that 70 percent of clinical diagnoses and treatment decisions are based on diagnostic data including that from laboratories. It is imperative that we give laboratory testing the attention it deserves."


LabVantage receives SAP NetWeaver Excellence Award 2006

LabVantage has received the SAP NetWeaver Excellence Award 2006 from SAP India. LabVantage's Sapphire Laboratory Information Management Suite (LIMS) was recognized by SAP India as the best new ISV (independent software vendor) application ported to the SAP NetWeaver platform.

Jim Aurelio, president and CEO of LabVantage, said, "It is an honor to receive this award from SAP India in recognition of LabVantage's success in porting our application to SAP NetWeaver. We are pleased to offer an integrated enterprise IT platform, supported by two of the most prestigious industry leaders, which will continue to benefit our mutual customers."
Earlier this year, LabVantage released the Sapphire Enterprise Connector, a component of LabVantage Sapphire and announced that it has successfully achieved "Powered by SAP NetWeaver" status.

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