Life Technologies, Carlsbad, Calif, has acquired Compendia Bioscience, a cancer bioinformatics company used by the pharmaceutical industry to identify novel gene targets for drug discovery and development. Its oncology expertise and high-value, proprietary assets enhance Life’s diagnostic development capabilities across multiple platforms, including next-generation sequencing, qPCR, and proteome analysis.

Compendia’s existing business, which will continue under the leadership of its current management team, adds an established base of pharmaceutical industry customers for Life Technologies’ platforms. Compendia holds a large, comprehensive set of mutation profiles, gene expression data, and cellular biomarkers that has been gathered from more than 62,000 cancer patients. Oncomine, the company’s cloud-based analytics tool, integrates high-throughput cancer profiling data across a large volume of cancer types to allow users to mine it for correlations among genetic signatures, clinical status, and drug response markers. Compendia’s oncology data is utilized by pharmaceutical companies in their drug development work and will extend Life’s abilities to both develop its own tests and to partner with pharmaceutical companies in companion diagnostic development.

In addition to enabling Life Technologies’ ability to develop its own lab-developed and commercial tests, the Compendia acquisition will enhance Life’s companion diagnostics effort and positions the company as a partner of choice for pharma. Life can offer products and services for target discovery and validation, biomarker analysis, clinical sample testing, companion diagnostics development, and clinical implementation. Life Technologies plans to develop a clinical version of Oncomine, which will allow physicians to compare their patients’ genetic signatures against large data sets to determine the most effective drug protocols. A seamless transfer of the bioinformatics data into easy-to-use, actionable information will be possible with the treating physician portal repurposed from the Navigenics acquisition.