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New Lab & IT Products for Integrated Biology: Jul 1, 2006



AlphaScreen PhosphoSensor

PerkinElmer has launched the AlphaScreen PhosphoSensor, a new antibody-free kinase research technology platform. The non-radioactive assay will allow researchers to perform direct measurements of kinase activities on full-length protein substrates where no antibody is available. That is, using the new AlphaScreen PhosphoSensor technology, scientists can directly measure the phosphorylation of large protein substrates with high sensitivity and accuracy, and without radioactivity. This is ideal for drug discovery researchers involved in the identification, validation, and preliminary characterization of any new kinases.


Omnia Kinase Assays

Invitrogen has launched its Omnia Kinase Assays for the rapid, homogeneous, and sensitive detection of enzymatic activity under physiological ATP concentrations. Scientists can simply mix reagents, read real-time fluorescent signals, and get results in under an hour. Omnia offers a simple mix and read procedure, streamlining assay set-up, and speeding data collection.



GeneMarker 1.5

SoftGenetics has announced the release of GeneMarker 1.5 software, which features several enhanced sizing algorithms and includes applications for quantitative analysis using either peak height or area, SnapShot, or SNPlex chemistries. The software’s new automatic dye setting also offers enhanced compatibility for use with all major electrophoresis systems, such as Applied Biosystems, Beckman Coulter, Li-Cor, and GE Healthcare. The auto dye feature of the software automatically selects the appropriate dye and channel to customize the software to the output of the electrophoresis system.


GenePattern 2.0

The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard has released GenePattern 2.0, an upgrade of its software tool for analyzing gene expression data. GenePattern enables researchers to perform custom data analyses and to record them for later playback. Version 2.0 includes components for analyzing proteomic data. GenePattern is freely available to the research community and provides multiple user interfaces, which accommodate the needs of researchers with programming experience as well as those without it.

Broad Institute

Mutation Surveyor

Following a collaboration with Case Western Reserve Univeristy, SoftGenetics has released an updated version of its Mutation Surveyor software with a new function for the automated analysis of methylation sequence traces. This methylation detection ability makes Mutation Surveyor the first software to automate DNA sequence analysis using a unique physical trace comparison technology to detect nucleotide changes between two sequence traces.



FISH Tag DNA and RNA kits

Invitrogen has launched its FISH Tag DNA and RNA kits, which contain everything needed for fluorescence in situ hybridization, including reagents needed for probe synthesis, labeling, purification, and imaging of the labeled substance. FISH Tag kits are optimized at every step in FISH, including the implementation of a two-step labeling procedure that eliminates the need for second detection methods, PureLink nucleic acid purification technology, and SlowFade Gold antifade reagent for signal intensity.  FISH Tag kits are available in single-color kits with one of four Alexa Fluor dyes or in multicolor kits with all four dyes to provide simultaneous localization of multiple sequence-specific targets. 


Human and Mouse Reporter Tagged Genes

SpectraGenetics offers a variety of mouse and human genes that express reporter-tagged proteins for studies in cultured cells and transgenic animals. Unlike cDNAs, these clones carry complete native gene sequences, including sequence elements required for natural regulation of gene expression and alternative splicing. Reporters include epitope tags, GFP, and luciferase. Clones express puromycin or neomycin resistance for selection of stable transfectants. 


Labeled Detection Conjugates

Kreatech has launched enzyme and dye-labeled anti-fluorescein and anti-biotin detection conjugates including SA-PE (Streptavidin R-Phycoerythrin). These conjugates can be used in combination with the company’s PlatinumBright nucleic acid labeling kits, which offer researchers the ability to non-enzymatically label their target with a choice of commonly used fluorescent dyes. The addition of conjugates that detect biotin and fluorescein will enable researchers to visualize the biotin-labeled nucleic acid and amplify the signal of fluorescein-labeled low abundant targets.

Kreatech Biotechnology

Mass Spec


Shimadzu Biotech has introduced the AXIMA-TOF2 high-performance MALDI TOF-TOF mass spectrometer. The instrument delivers high energy collisions (CID with laboratory energy of 20keV) for higher sensitivity, and incorporates novel ion gate technology for high-resolution precursor ion selection. The AXIMA-TOF2 comes with multiple software features including Proteomics Suite, LC MALDI Integrated Package, Biomarker Recognition, Functional Genomics, and QC Applications with Launchpad software. In addition to its use in proteomics, the AXIMA- TOF2 is equally adept at analyzing and processing polymers, oligonucleotides, SNPs, metabolites, lipids, carbohydrates, and small molecules.

Shimadzu Biotech


ArrayPlate 384-4

High Throughput Genomics has announced the availability of a new ArrayPlate to measure four genes in each well of a 384-well plate for high-throughput screening and profiling. The ArrayPlate 384-4 enables researchers in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries to rapidly and accurately quantify RNA expression levels in cells treated with potential new drugs with high sample throughput, 10,000 or more samples per hour, and whole assay CVs of less than 10 percent. Instead of studying one gene at a time, researchers are also able to select a set of genes for simultaneous evaluation, a critical step in identifying the most promising drug compounds to treat complex, multi-factorial diseases.

High Throughput Genomics

BriteSpot Microarray Workstation

SciGene recently released its BriteSpot microarray workstation for genomic and proteomic research. Developed in cooperation with leading microarray laboratories, the BriteSpot Workstation standardizes and automates microarray hybridization, washing, and drying in an ozone-safe environment. The system increases array throughput and reproducibility by controlling the physical and environmental factors that contribute to variability. By automating and controlling critical elements in the process — such as hybridization, wash temperature, agitation, and exposure to ozone — the BriteSpot Workstation minimizes data variation from non-biological sources.


Chip2 E. coli K12 Microarray

Oxford Gene Technology has launched its first microarray product, an E. coli K12 ChIP-on-chip. Each Chip2 array is fabricated using OGT’s ink jet in situ synthesis platform and interrogates the whole E. coli K12 genome with a probe density of 22,000 oligonucleotide features. Chip2 microarrays can be used to identify the binding positions of any DNA binding proteins in a cell; to analyze specific changes under various environmental conditions; as a model system to further understand gene regulation; or to reveal potential therapeutic targets against a prokaryotic species. 

Oxford Gene Technology

ExonHit Arrays for Affymetrix GeneChip

ExonHit has announced that a number of its SpliceArray products are now available on the Affymetrix microarray platform. SpliceArrays are a new generation of microarrays that resolve the expression of genes at the level of their alternatively spliced transcripts. Products that are now available on the Affymetrix platform include ExonHit’s SpliceArrays for GPCR, ion channel, nuclear receptors, and apoptosis pathways. Custom arrays are also available.

ExonHit Therapeutics


Thermal Cycler Quad System

Techne has announced its Thermal Cycler TC-412 Quad System, which features high performance, fast heating rate, PC connectivity, interchangeable blocks, user friendliness, versatility, and range of throughput. The system uses the latest in peltier technology to create the sturdiest of blocks and combines that with comprehensive software to make the cyclers easy to program and one of the most reliable thermal cyclers on the market. Techne’s four year or 80,000 cycle warranty is the longest in the industry, assuring users that the units will work time after time, year after year — all at a highly competitive price.



Flexible Lab Automation System/Handler

SSI Robotics has launched its Flexible Lab Automation System/Handler (FLASH). This robotic workcell integrates a variety of third-party equipment into one cohesive system that performs microplate-based drug discovery operations. The system includes software that enables scientists to add or remove different instruments, and to schedule their assays and experiments. It can also be configured for tube-based operations such as tube labeling, sorting, filling and capping.

SSI Robotics

Radius Lab Automation System

Protedyne’s Radius is a bench-top laboratory automation system designed to bring the benefits of industrial robotics into laboratories with lower requirements for throughput, space, and budget. The system’s design incorporates an inverted SCARA robot arm, which allows for efficient, unrestricted access to the entire work deck. ProteView software suite allows for advanced sample tracking, process control, and data integrity.  Radius is available in standard configurations for common assays, and tailored configurations for applications in diagnostics, pharmaceutical, and biotech R&D.


Sample prep

Bulk IGF-I

Invitrogen has announced the availability of its Bulk IGF-I Product (BIP) for use in large-scale manufacturing and process development applications. IGF-I is an insulin-like growth factor used to supplement serum-free culture media. The new bulk packaging eliminates the need for multiple vials and reduces the potential risks of compromised product. Also, because BIP is animal-origin free, regulatory approval is simplified.


Colony Fast-Screen Kit

EPICENTRE Biotech has created the Colony Fast-Screen Kit, which provides a rapid and sensitive method for screening the size of cloned DNAs without the need to grow cultures, perform minipreps, or restriction endonuclease digestions. The size of PCR, cDNA, and other clones can be determined in one hour or less. The kit is sensitive enough to determine the size of a single-copy BAC clone in as little as four hours. All standard E. coli host strains work with the Colony Fast-Screen Kit.

EPICENTRE Biotechnologies

IPS Tempo pump system

Flowserve has introduced IPS Tempo, a pre-engineered intelligent pump optimization, control, and protection system. IPS Tempo adjusts pump operations for flow, pressure, temperature, and fluid level changes. The system monitors process variables and pump power, and offers extensive condition monitoring and control. IPS Tempo incorporates variable frequency drive technology, pump-specific optimization software, an industrial grade electric drive, and a menu-driven user interface to provide superior protection, reliability, and the ease-of-use not possible with other VFDs or pump control systems.



Merlin Capillary-Based DNA Sequencer

DeltaDot, a spinout from London’s Imperial College of Science, Technology, and Medicine, has launched the Merlin capillary-based DNA sequencer. Merlin incorporates DeltaDot’s Label Free Intrinsic Imaging technology, which works by using many hundreds of UV detectors to image the biomolecules as they traverse the capillary electrophoresis system. Merlin, a short-read sequencer, applies LFII to the separation stage of nucleic acid sequencing, eliminating the need to label the molecules, saving both time and costs. The advanced system incorporates signal processing and data mining tools to separate and identify unlabeled biomolecules, providing unprecedented resolution, sensitivity, and reproducibility of analysis.



To tell GT about new recently released products, e-mail [email protected]

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