NEW YORK, March 23 – Spectral Genomics of Houston has introduced a mouse BAC array that quantifies the whole mouse genome in a single chip and can detect chromosomal imbalances, the company said Friday.
This new product challenges the dominance of market leader Affymetrix, which has several mouse array products on the market.
Unlike the Affymetrix chips, which contain strings of oligonucleotides that are synthesized on the chip through photolithography, the SpectralChip arrays are made with BAC clones placed on an untreated chip.
“Spectral Genomics' chemical attachment is fundamentally different from all traditional microarray techniques,” Shishir Shah, president of Spectral Genomics, said in a statement. “Contrary to the modification of the surface by chemicals like poly-L-lysine or silane to attach unmodified DNA, Spectral Genomics' core technology is based on a unique proprietary chemical coupling of DNA fragments to untreated surfaces."
This method is designed to eliminate the genomic background signals by random hybridizations of DNA molecules to charged surfaces of arrays.
The kit being marketed includes two arrays with duplicate spots of 976 non-overlapping BAC clones covering the entire mouse genome, as well as reagents and labeling solutions for array hybridization.
These BACs do leave 3mb gaps in the genome, which means the chips only detect abnormalities that are greater than 3mb long.Spectral Genomics did not disclose pricing information on the arrays, but indicated they would offer a low-cost solution for researchers.