“August 13, 2001 Intelligence: Late Breaking Lab News”

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In recent years he’s become an influential “behind the scenes” guy within the lab industry. Now Heywood D. Cochrane, Jr. is joining the Board of Directors at AmeriPath, Inc., based in Riviera Beach, Florida. Most laboratorians know Cochrane from his tour as President and CEO of Allied Clinical Laboratories before it was acquired by National Health Labs (NHL) in 1994. He held several executive positions at Laboratory Corporation of America after its acquisition of NHL.


Since leaving LabCorp in 1997, Cochrane has been CEO of CHD Meridian Corporate Healthcare in Nashville. But he’s kept active in the lab business. He currently sits on the board of TriPath Imaging, Inc. and was a director of Unilab Holdings before its sale to Kelso in 1999 and a director at InformDX prior to its sale in 2000 to AmeriPath.


In the spring of 1998, the introduction of Perkin-Elmer Corp.’s newest generation of genetic analyzers accelerated the mapping of the human geneome. Now the goal is to map the human proteome. Just weeks ago, Oxford GlycoSciences Plc, based in Oxford, England, announced the introduction of new protein-detecting technology that it claims is many times faster than existing methods. The company says it can identify proteins in cells ten times faster than the company’s existing equipment.


Oxford Glycogenics is a company to watch in the field of proteomics. It is estimated there are about 30,000 human genes and these genes produce between 200,000 to 300,000 proteins or protein variants. During the past year, Oxford, along with rivals Myriad Genetics, Inc., Celera Genomics, and others, have identified at least 100,000 proteins. Oxford’s goal is to develop drugs based on proteins. “The real goal of molecular medicine is to pinpoint the protein differences,” stated Raj Parekh, Chief Scientific Officer. “It’s to find the protein target for treating disease.” Oxford’s new protein discovery technology may radically accelerate the race to map the human proteome.


After almost five years of leadership at TriCor Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, CEO Linda Cole is retiring. Plans are for her to work through September. A search is under way for her successor. TriCor recently hired Toby Simon, M.D. to be the lab’s first Corporate Medical Director/Chief Operating Officer. TriCor Labs is one of the more interesting lab outreach organizations. It is owned by three hospital/hospital system partners and has undergone some difficult management challenges as it has worked to create a consolidated, unified laboratory services organization serving its partners’ needs and the physicians’ office community.


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