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Fluidigm, Broad Establish Center for Research in Mammalian Single-cell Genomics

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Fluidigm and the Broad Institute today launched a new center aimed at developing new methods and discoveries in mammalian single-cell genomics.

Housed at the Broad's Cambridge, Mass.-based headquarters, the Single-Cell Genomics Center is also anticipated to be a hub for collaboration among researchers doing studies in single-cell genomics in stem cells, cancer biology, and other fields.

According to the partners, the center results from ongoing collaborations between them "that bridge multiple genomic platforms," and will be equipped with Fluidigm's single-cell tools, protocols, and technologies, including the BioMark HD System.

"The cell is the fundamental unit of life, and through greater understanding of it, researchers can make breakthroughs in large and important fields, such as cancer diagnosis and therapy, stem cell biology, vaccine development, and even the mounting battle against drug-resistant bacteria," Fluidigm President and CEO Gajus Worthington said in a statement. "We expect this center to inspire, enable, and accelerate efforts in the emerging field of single-cell research."

The center intends to develop novel single-cell, microfluidic methods for gene expression profiling, RNA/DNA sequencing, and epigenetic analysis with an aim at making single-cell research accessible to the greater research community by developing and disseminating new workflows, reagents, bioinformatics tools, and data sets, Fluidigm and the Broad said.

Ken Livak, Fluidigm Senior Scientific Fellow, will serve as the Alliance Manager at the Broad and will oversee research conducted at the Single-Cell Genomics Center.

Wendy Winckler, director of the Genetic Analysis Platform at the Broad, said that the efforts of the new center "will enable researchers to access the exciting new world of single-cell genomics, catalyze discoveries, and advance our understanding of this important area of biology."

The Broad is soliciting the first proposals for projects to be conducted at the center, which is expected to be fully operational sometime this quarter.