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Uppsala University Researchers to Collaborate with Pyrosequencing

NEW YORK, July 10 - A research group at Uppsala University in Sweden has agreed to use Pyrosequencing technology to examine the genomes of antibiotic resistant bacteria, Pyrosequencing said Tuesday.

In this one year agreement, Lars Engstrand, a clinical bacteriologist at Uppsala, will use several applications of the Pyrosequencing technology to analyze antibiotic resistant strains of Helicobacter pylori and Mycobacterium tuberculosis , the bacteria responsible for gastric problems and tuberculosis, respectively. Pyrosequencing will provide technical support throughout the duration of the collaboration.

Although Pyrosequencing, based in Uppsala, declined to disclose financial details, Williamson said that the company planned to give Engstrand the technology at no cost.

Pyrosequencing's technology detects sequences by a process of synthesis, whereby users determine the sequence of a single-stranded sample based on the nucleotides that bind to the sample, one-by-one. The technology has applications in sequencing, SNP detection, as well as genotyping. This latest collaboration with Engstrand "is a reflection of the strength of the technology platform for genotyping," Williamson said.

Williamson expects the arrangement to help refine Pyrosequencing's technology, because the experiments will help optimize parameters such as assay conditions. In addition, he said both partners hope to publish any results obtained from this collaboration jointly, perhaps attracting the interest of other research centers working with different pathogens who wish to enter into similar arrangements with Pyrosequencing.

Looking ahead, Pyrosequencing plans to extend the period of this specific project if all goes well. In addition, if this current arrangement identifies any assays with commercial potential, Williamson said Pyrosequencing would consider seeking FDA approval for those assays.

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