LION Bioscience and IBM have announced an agreement to offer subscription-based hosted computing services over the Internet to life sciences companies and interested academic research institutions. Aimed primarily at biotechnology companies undertaking drug-related research, the service could level the playing field for smaller companies versus "Big Pharma," said Anne-Marie Derouault, director of business alliances for IBM Life Sciences.

"Once you had to have the room, the air-conditioning, now it's hosted in an IBM facility. LION and IBM are changing the game in life sciences and enabling biotech companies to rapidly leverage technology for competitive advantage," said Derouault.

"Lion has really been trying to market a full suite," said GartnerG2 senior analyst Jonathan Edwards, "but there's been a general souring on bioinformatics as a market, so this deal could be seen as a way to go the other way: 'if you're not going for the full suite, we'll give you...

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