Losses at gene-data merchant Gene Logic Inc. narrowed by just $300,000 but revenue increased 23 percent during a daunting three months for much of the biotechnology sector.

Gaithersburg-based Gene Logic, which sells access to data about the human genetic code, relies heavily on paid subscriptions from other biotech firms, and its revenue is often closely tied to the sector's fortunes. During the three months ended Sept. 30, two drugmakers -- Japanese firms Mitsubishi Pharma Corp. and Fujisawa Pharmaceutical Co. -- entered subscription agreements with Gene Logic.

For the quarter, the company reported a net loss of $7 million (26 cents per share), compared with a net loss of $7.2 million (27 cents) for the same period of 2001. Revenue for the third quarter was $14.2 million, compared with $11.5 million during the year-earlier period, largely because of the two new subscriptions, the company said.

Operating expenses for the third quarter increased to $21.5 million from $19.6 million. The higher costs are credited to the acquisition of tissue samples and software upgrades, the company said.

At the end of September, the company said it had $171.9 million in cash and cash equivalents on hand.