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Third Wave Develops Microarray Platform for its Invader Genotyping Technology

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Third Wave Technologies and researchers from two academic centers in the US have applied the company’s Invader genotyping technology to a microarray platform, the company said.

Adding the Invader technology onto a bead, chip, or other microarray format will allow Third Wave to market to scientists performing highly multiplexed analyses, according to the Madison Wisc., company.

The Invader uses two short DNA probes, which hybridize to the target and form a specific structure. Third Wave’s proprietary Cleavase enzymes, which are designed to recognize this structure, cut one of the probes to release what the company calls a DNA “flap.” The flap then binds to a fluorescently labeled probe, forming another structure that the Cleavase enzyme recognizes and cuts. When the enzyme cuts this labeled probe, the probe emits a fluorescent signal.

According to company literature, each DNA flap can generate thousands of signals per hour, which are easily read on available fluorescence detection systems.

The advantage of this process, the company has said, is that it can detect DNA and RNA without prior amplification using PCR. The Invader platform is designed for both use in SNP detection and for amplification-free measurement of gene expression.

The microarray application, perfected by Third Wave and researchers at Northwestern University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison and detailed in the current issue of Nucleic Acids Research Methods Online, “extends the scalability and market potential of the platform,” Lance Fors, Third Wave’s chairman and CEO, said in the statement.

A spokesman for Third Wave said that it took the company and its university partners roughly one year to show that the Invader technology can be applied to a microarray platform. Third Wave plans to report its findings at the 51st annual meeting of the American Society of Human Genetics in October, he added.

He could not say when the technology would be ready for commercialization.

— MMJ

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