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Sequella Receives $244K NIAID Grant for Drug-Resistant TB Assay

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company Sequella said yesterday that it has received a $244,000 grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases to develop a diagnostic assay that will use nucleic acid amplification to test for drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis.
The Rockville, Md.-based company said it will use the funds to further develop its Sequella Biological System for Molecular Antibiotic Resistance, or B-SMART, which uses bacteriophage-based technology to identify antibiotic-resistant TB in clinical samples that have been exposed to antimicrobials.
The technology identifies “a unique molecular sequence produced by the phage itself as it replicates,” the company said, making it unnecessary to know the specific gene or genes that are responsible for the resistance.
The company said that for slow-growing pathogens, the B-SMART technology “could potentially provide simultaneous reporting of microbial identification and drug susceptibility in a matter of hours, rather than days or weeks.”
Sequella said intends for the technology to be able to be fully automated and “amenable to multiplexing.”

The Scan

Harvard Team Report One-Time Base Editing Treatment for Motor Neuron Disease in Mice

A base-editing approach restored SMN levels and improved motor function in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy, a new Science paper reports.

International Team Examines History of North American Horses

Genetic and other analyses presented in Science find that horses spread to the northern Rockies and Great Plains by the first half of the 17th century.

New Study Examines Genetic Dominance Within UK Biobank

Researchers analyze instances of genetic dominance within UK Biobank data, as they report in Science.

Cell Signaling Pathway Identified as Metastasis Suppressor

A new study in Nature homes in on the STING pathway as a suppressor of metastasis in a mouse model of lung cancer.