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Biolog Introduces New Microbial Phenotype MicroArrays

NEW YORK - Biolog, a Hayward, Calif., microarray maker, has expanded its line of bacterial phenotype microarrays, the company said Thursday.

The microarrays include over 400 different phenotypes of a single type of bacterium or other cell, placed on a single chip. While traditional DNA microarrays allow researchers to measure hundreds or thousands of gene changes for a single sample, these arrays are designed to allow researchers to observe a single gene change across hundreds of different cellular phenotypes.

These new microarrays in Biolog's product lineup include specially prepared cell samples of bacterial pathogens, Pseudomonas aeruginosa , Burkholderia cepacia , Ralstonia solanacearum , Sinorhizobium meliloti , and Listeria monocytogenes

The company also sells E. coli , Salmonella typhimurium , Ralstonia pickettii , Vibrio fluvalis , and Listeria innocua  arrays.

The arrays are designed to help researchers understand the differences between innocuous and harmful phenotypes of the same bacterial species, and to determine the differences in gene function associated with pathogenicity in bacteria. The researchers can alter a gene of interest in the cell line, then use phenotypic microarrays of both control and altered cells to detect the changes in cell physiology.

Researchers can also use these microarrays to test the effects of antibiotics and other drugs on many different phenotypes of a bacterium simultaneously, the company said

"Since its introduction May 2000, phenotypic microarray technology has received strong interest from researchers around the globe," Timothy Mullane, president and CEO of Biolog, said in a statement. "With our ability to provide important answers in antibacterial and antifungal research, we are currently directing our commercial efforts toward the establishment of collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies in accelerating development of infectious disease therapies."

The company aims to develop phenotype arrays that provide up to 2000 phenotypes of the E. coli  bacterium and the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae,  and soon plans to release microarrays for Staphylococcus , Streptococcus , and Enterococcus ; as well as yeast and pathogens such as Candida albicans and Ustilago maydis

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