Tuesday, January 4, 2000
Lexicon Genetics Inc. has received some absolution in its controversy
with the scientific community, which erupted in the fall after researchers at
the Howard Hughes Medical Institute refused to sign the company's material transfer
agreement for its OmniBank library of mutant embryonic stem (ES) cells. But
at the same time, the company now faces direct competition from academia.
The controversy stemmed from HHMI's refusal to agree to reach-through
rights contained in Lexicon's MTA, thus preventing the transfer of published
ES cell clones to academic researchers (see BioCentury, Oct. 25, 1999).
The clones are used to generate mice with disruptions or mutations in specific
genes of interest.