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Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory engages Hairpin Technologies Inc. to license its short hairpin RNA (shRNA) technology

Cold Spring Harbor, NY — Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) has engaged Hairpin Technologies Inc. to expand the commercial distribution and research use of short hairpin RNA (shRNA) technology. Hairpin Technologies will serve as CSHL’s exclusive agent for negotiating and executing new license agreements with potential licensees of CSHL’s U.S. and international patents covering the shRNA technology.

“We are excited to work closely with Hairpin Technologies to expand the number of commercial entities authorized to use shRNA,” said Teri Willey, CSHL Vice President, Business Development and Technology Transfer.

The technology is already commercially available from a number of authorized distributors with existing non-exclusive license agreements to make, market and sell shRNA reagents, including Cellecta, GE Healthcare, Mirimus and TransOMIC. Pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies of all sizes, as well as contract research organizations which utilize shRNA, are required to obtain a non-exclusive license from CSHL for approved access to the relevant intellectual property.

Invented at CSHL by Gregory Hannon, Ph.D., Professor and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, shRNA is a versatile research tool used in functional genomics and drug discovery. It can be used to silence target-gene expression to understand biological function and identify novel drug targets. The technology is useful in determining the role of specific genes in disease, allowing researchers to observe what happens when these genes are turned off. shRNA may help scientists identify and validate novel drug targets for new pharmaceuticals.

Hairpin Technologies Inc. will lead marketing, corporate outreach and out-licensing efforts to identify and engage potential commercial licensees.  For more information, visit

Written by: Public Affairs | | 516-367-8455

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About Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Founded in 1890, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory has shaped contemporary biomedical research and education with programs in cancer, neuroscience, plant biology and quantitative biology. Home to eight Nobel Prize winners, the private, not-for-profit Laboratory employs 1,100 people including 600 scientists, students and technicians. The Meetings & Courses Program annually hosts more than 12,000 scientists. The Laboratory’s education arm also includes an academic publishing house, a graduate school and the DNA Learning Center with programs for middle and high school students and teachers. For more information, visit