Thursday, July 12, 2012

Complete Genomics (Nasdaq: GNOM) shares rise on new technology

Complete Genomics (Nasdaq: GNOM) shares rise on new technologyNorthern, WI 7/12/12 (StreetBeat) -- Shares of Complete Genomics Inc (Nasdaq: GNOM) continued their rally on Thursday, jumping 11 percent in premarket trading after the gene sequencing company unveiled a technology that is expected to improve accuracy and reduce the amount of DNA needed for testing.

The new technology, named Long Fragment Read (LFR), will result in a 10-fold increase in accuracy, Complete Genomics said in a statement late on Wednesday. The shares rose 49 percent after the announcement.

"LFR potentially gives Complete Genomics' service offering a key point of differentiation upon introduction in early 2013," UBS analyst Daniel Arias said in a note.

Complete Genomics said early last month it would explore strategic options, including a sale, and expected to delay capacity expansion.

Gene sequencing companies, which also include bigger names Illumina Inc and Life Technologies Corp, cater to a client base that mostly comprise educational and research institutions and compete on price.

The sector has recently come under pressure from a cut in the funding provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for basic science research.

As the technology is yet to see widespread commercial adoption, the funding cut is one of the biggest issues faced by the sector that is on a persistent drive to bring down the price of gene sequencing to about $1,000.

Currently, the average price is $4,000-$5,000.

Shares of Complete Genomics were at $3.24 before the bell. They closed up 44 percent at $2.93 on Wednesday on the Nasdaq.

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