Agreement to Integrate Asterand’s Database with Biowisdom’s Platform Announced

Asterand and BioWisdom Announce Agreement to Integrate Asterand’s Quantitative Human Gene Expression Database with BioWisdom’s Integrated Discovery Platform

DETROIT, February 09, 2009 – Asterand plc (LSE: ATD), a leading provider of human tissue and services to pharmaceutical companies engaged in drug discovery research, and BioWisdom Ltd, a market leader in delivering healthcare intelligence to the pharmaceutical industry, announce that the Companies have entered into a data syndication agreement to provide value-added delivery of Asterand’s human gene expression profiles through BioWisdom’s intelligence solutions. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Through this agreement, BioWisdom gains access to the data within Asterand’s proprietary Target Evaluator™ database. The database consists of quantitative human gene expression profiles that chart the expression topography of more than 2,500 commercially relevant gene transcripts across a panel of 72 human tissues. These profiles are systematically generated using high-quality human RNA and a sensitive RT-PCR protocol. BioWisdom will harmonize the data with its industry-leading software solutions enabling the information to be combined with other public and private sources or utilized independently as raw data or assertional metadata. The harmonized Asterand data are available as an entire dataset or sub-sets of selected targets and tissues.

BioWisdom’s ontology powered intelligence solutions ease the integration and display of data enabling researchers to visually analyze text, numerical, categorical and sequence data in a single integrated environment. As a result, researchers are quickly able to relate divergent data sets to uncover previously unknown associations and answer key scientific questions.

Martyn Coombs, Chief Executive Officer of Asterand commented:

“We are pleased to enter this partnership to further commercialize the Target Evaluator™ database. BioWisdom is a market leader in the integration and syndication of medical intelligence. The combination of Asterand’s human gene expression profile data with BioWisdom’s ontology software solutions will be a powerful tool in the discovery of new pathway-specific therapeutic strategies, biomarker applications and potential side-effect liabilities for drug candidates that interact with specific targets. In addition, BioWisdom’s hands-on experience in the drug discovery market will ensure that we are able to maximize the return from our considerable investment in creating Asterand’s human gene expression database over several years.”

Gordon Smith Baxter, Chief Executive Officer of BioWisdom added:

“This partnership is the first of many we plan to secure with providers of high-quality premium data. Data on its own can provide value, but it is in the context of other data that it really begins to enlighten. Our ontological approach is perfectly suited to the task of integrating diverse data sets and we are delighted with the opportunity that this relationship provides.”

Notes to Editors

About Asterand plc

Asterand is a leading supplier of high-quality human tissue and tissue-based services. Their comprehensive approach to human tissue and research services offers pharmaceutical, biotech and diagnostic companies the unique opportunity to have one company meet all of their human biomaterial needs along the continuum of drug discovery and development. Their mission is to accelerate target discovery and compound validation and enable pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies to take safer and more effective drugs into the clinic. For more information please visit

About BioWisdom

BioWisdom delivers intelligence for the Healthcare Industry and helps clients to navigate the complex scientific and commercial issues involved in developing successful healthcare products. The company provides a powerful suite of software tools for the formatting, search, visualization and high value analysis of healthcare intelligence. The BioWisdom team combines extensive experience of the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries with proven expertise in life science software development. For more information, please visit