ALSO NOTED: Irvine gets $10m for stem cell research

Research Notes

PowderMed is pushing ahead with plans to begin human testing of a new H5N1 vaccine, blasting tiny particles of DNA that make up the H5 in the virus. Researchers will use helium to impregnate the skin with the experimental vaccine. The Oxford, UK company believes the new approach to needle-free vaccines can be used in a wide variety of therapies and can also cut the manufacturing time on vaccines to a fraction of what it currently requires using hen's eggs. Article

Scientists from Cornell University's medical school have successfully completed a small Phase I study in which they were able to stop or reverse the progress of Alzheimer's by treating patients with antibodies produced naturally in the body. Phase II is already underway. Article

UC Irvine reeled in a $10 million donation for its stem cell research program, much of it for a new research facility. Article

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic have identified a gene mutation that disrupts potassium ion channels in heart muscles, which is responsible for atrial fibrillation. The gene mutation -- called KCNA5 - makes people five times more likely to suffer a stroke. Article

Scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel have discovered a genetic code that dictates where nucleosomes are positioned on the DNA strand. Article

Scientists at the University of Liverpool have found two proteins -- CapG and Gelsolin - that could play a key role in accelerating the proliferation of pancreatic cancer. The proteins help dictate cell movement and may help spread the cancer to other parts of the body. Article

Seeking to quell significant skepticism about his work, scientist Panos Zavos has described how he claims to have cloned a human embryo from human skin cells and transferred it, unsuccessfully, into a women's uterus. Article

Tools & Tech

GE Healthcare is donating advanced imaging equipment to the Translational Genomics Research Institute in Phoenix. TGen is focused on using advanced molecular genomics to advance the knowledge obtained from the Human Genome Project to find new therapies, diagnostics and prognostics. This new equipment will be used to better watch cellular morphology, among other things. Article

Kreatech Biotechnology BV has launched the "Genome-pULSe, arrayCGH Whole Genome Amplification and Labeling Kit," the latest addition to their product portfolio for arrayCGH analysis. Article

Clinical Data's Vital Diagnostics division has launched the Lumy Microplate Luminometer and Turbi-Quick POC immunoanalyzer, a new benchtop analyzer for the rapid quantification of immuno proteins in doctor's offices and small laboratories. Article

Clinical Data has also unveiled the Excyte 20 random-access ESR analyzer, which performs up to 80 sed rate tests per hour providing high-throughput automated ESR. Article

Deals and dollars

Albany Molecular Research, Inc. has inked a multi-year drug manufacturing deal with New River Pharmaceuticals. Article

Supertron Technologies, which develops solutions for high-performance preclinical and clinical Magnetic Resonance Imaging coils, probes and accessories, has raised $3.5 million in a Series C financing. Article

And Finally… A hydrogen-powered toy car may offer a miniature snapshot of the future. Article