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Genentech Becomes First Early-Access Partner for WaferGen Single-Cell Tech

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – WaferGen Bio-systems announced today that it has signed a deal to work with Roche subsidiary Genentech to evaluate and test its SmartChip platform in single-cell sequencing as part of an early-access program.

WaferGen said the companies will validate the SmartChip technology for isolating single cells from various tissues and preparing libraries for next-generation sequencing.

WaferGen launched the early-access program earlier this year in order to help finalize development of the SmartChip technology for single-cell genomics applications. The company recently completed proof-of-concept work in collaboration with the Broad Institute and BGI.

WaferGen said that it expects the SmartChip technology will be able to yield a 50-fold increase in the production of single cells per chip versus current technologies, and that it will launch its first commercial single-cell analysis product by the end of this year.