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PreAnalytix, NuGen, RUCDR to Clinically Validate Workflow for Blood-Based RNA-seq

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) - PreAnalytix, NuGen Technologies, and RUCDR Infinite Biologics announced today that they will partner to develop and validate a workflow for collecting and processing whole blood samples for RNA sequencing.

The firms will put together a study to produce a workflow for use in clinical trials with the aim of reducing changes to RNA after collection and increasing sequencing efficiency.

Three independent laboratories will process samples collected, stored, and transported in PreAnalytix's PaXgene Blood RNA System and prepare strand-specific RNA-Seq libraries using NuGen's Ovation Human Blood RNA-Seq System prior to next-generation sequencing. RUCDR will oversee all sample collection, processing, and data analysis to validate the PreAnalytix and NuGen technologies in a combined workflow. Results of the study are expected to be published later in the year.

RNA molecules and expression levels are not always static after collection via blood. Gene induction, downregulation of genes, and degradation of nucleic acids during handling and processing of blood samples can lead to unreliable and potentially biased results. Whole blood also contains high levels of uninformative ribosomal RNA and reticulocyte globin RNA, which makes sequencing more expensive and less efficient.

"Sample quality has a direct effect on data integrity and is, therefore, critical to molecular diagnostic testing," Lynne Rainen, scientific director of PreAnalytiX, said in a statement.

The PAXgene Blood RNA System was developed by PreAnalytiX, a joint venture between Becton Dickinson and Qiagen, to address the issue of sample handling variability and is considered the gold standard for whole-blood collection for RNA-based tests, the firms said in a statement.

The core technology employed in NuGen's Ovation Human Blood RNA-Seq System, insert dependent adaptor cleavage technology, provides targeted depletion of human ribosomal RNA and adult human reticulocyte globin.

Financial and other terms of the collaboration were not disclosed.