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Agilent, Caliper Technologies, Ambion, Perlegen


Agilent To Reveal Probes on Chips

Agilent Technologies will make the sequences of the probes on its cDNA and oligonucleotide microarrays available to customers, the company said this week.

Until now, Agilent array customers could only access probe sequence if they were customers of Incyte’s LifeSeq and ZooSeq databases. Agilent licenses its probe content from Incyte. A recent expansion of the license agreement makes this probe disclosure possible, the company said.

This decision mimics Affymetrix’s move last year to make probe sequence available on its website.

The agreement also provides access to Incyte’s sequence annotation, which is based on the Proteome BioKnowledge Library Title Line, and includes related protein structure, function, and disease-association information, hand-edited from the scientific literature.

The company also said it is developing a 60-mer catalog oligo microarray.

Agilent customers will be given passwords to obtain access to probe sequences. More information is available at


Caliper, Ambion Partner for RNA Amp System

Caliper Technologies is doing the Texas two-step with Austin-based Ambion, partnering up to develop a microfluidics-based RNA amplification system.

Ambion is funding the collaboration with a $1.6 million Phase II SBIR grant from the NIH National Institute of General Medical Sciences.

The system is to combine a Caliper LabChip with Ambion’s reagent kit and an instrument that would do on-chip amplification of RNA. The device will be designed to save time and also make amplification more efficient, enabling researchers to successfully amplify smaller sample volumes.

An unnamed third party is also involved in the instrument development.


Perlegen offers Pearls of SNP Wisdom to International Diabetes Researchers

Affymetrix spinoff Perlegen said this week it would offer its microarray-based SNP genotyping expertise to an international collaborative project that studies the genetics of type 2 diabetes.

The project, which will look for diabetes-related genes on the long arm of chromosome 6, involves researchers from the National Human Genome Research Institute, from the National Public Health Institute of Finland, the University of Southern California, and the University of Michigan.

This US-Finnish collaboration, after nine years of research, has identified specific regions of the genome that may include genes pertinent to the disease. Working with Perlegen chief scientific officer David Cox, the team will apply the company’s chip-based system for high-throughput genotyping to further narrow the focus.


The Scan

Purnell Choppin Dies

Purnell Choppin, a virologist who led the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, has died at 91, according to the Washington Post.

Effectiveness May Decline, Data From Israel Suggests

The New York Times reports that new Israeli data suggests a decline in Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine effectiveness against Delta variant infection, though protection against severe disease remains high.

To See Future Risk

Slate looks into the use of polygenic risk scores in embryo screening.

PLOS Papers on Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus, Bone Marrow Smear Sequencing, More

In PLOS this week: genomic analysis of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus pseudintermedius, archived bone marrow sequencing, and more.