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New Products Launched at IBC Life Sciences Drug Discovery Technology Conference

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Following is a summary of notable new products launched at IBC Life Sciences’ Drug Discovery Technology conference, held last week in Boston:

Acea Biosciences launched the RT-CES microelectronic cell-based assay platform. RT-CES uses electrical impedance and resistance to measure changes in cell morphology and attachment. Acea said the assay is label-free, automated, and real-time; is available in 16- and 96-well formats; and is ideal for assay development and compound profiling.


Aurora Discovery announced the availability of the PicoRAPTR Workstation (see Inside Bioassays, 8/10/2004) and the Scout MPD Workstation. The Scout MPD is a low volume liquid-handling instrument for miniaturized, automated assays. The station offers non-contact liquid handling at nanoliter and picoliter volumes, and supports compound reformatting, screening, ADME/Tox, PCR and SNP processing, and oligonucleotide processing in high-density microplates, Aurora said. The multi-tip piezo dispenser has a 96-tip configuration and a five-microplate cache, and the instrument complements the PicoRAPTR workstation.


Beckman Coulter introduced its DTX Series Multimode Detectors. Designed to be integrated into current automated instrumentation or used alone, the DTX series of detectors enables multiple detection modes, including fluorescence, luminescence, and absorbance in one reader, the company said.


BioMedTech Laboratories launched coated 96-, 384-, and 1,536-well glass-bottom microplates. According to BioMedTech, the plates feature a high degree of optical quality, and are available coated for cell culture applications with poly-D-Lysine, collagen, gelatin, or fibronectin. Other available assay coatings include streptavidin, biotin, antibodies, low-binding coatings or coating with custom ligands.


Cell Signaling Technologies launched HTScan kinase assay kits for robust, high-throughput screening and kinase profiling. The kits provide purified, active kinase enzymes combined with optimized peptide substrates and phospho-specific antibodies, CST said.


Cellomics previewed its Spot Detector BioApplication and image analysis algorithm that reports multiple measurements on spots in cells, such as number, size, and intensity. The tool has multiple biological applications including receptor internalization and trafficking. Cellomics said it would officially launch the product later this year.


CompuCyte launched the iColor fluorochromatic imaging cytometer. The company said the product is the first on the market to allow simultaneous analysis of fluorescent and chromatically-stained specimens. The new instrument uses three lasers operating at 440, 543, and 633 nm, and three-photomultiplier tube fluorescence detection with interchangeable filter blocks. The platform includes iColor cytometric analysis software and iBrowser data analysis software.


Innovatis announced the availability of the Cellscreen PA, a modular system for repeatedly observing small volume cell cultivation vessels over time, allowing the user to document the growth of cell culture through optical imaging without staining or sampling. Hardware remains consistent throughout all platforms, while the company has developed accompanying software modules for proliferation studies of suspended and adherent cells, and cloning experiments.


Labcyte introduced the S4 Pipetting Workstation, which builds upon the design of the company’s SII workstation. It is a compact, tabletop pipetting station with four deck positions for nanoliter to microliter dispensing to 96-, 384-, and 1,536-well plates. Labcyte also launched the Echo 550 Compound Reformatter, which transfers as little as five nanoliters with acoustic energy. This eliminates tips, pins, and nozzles while improving precision and reducing cost, the company said. The system is designed for replication, reformatting, compression, and expansion of compound libraries from multi-well microplates.


OriGene launched the Proteinase and Ion Channel CloneSet, collections of human full-length cDNAs for the respective gene families. All the cDNAs are cloned in non-proprietary expression vectors, and are ready for transfection and in vitro expression.


Richardson Technologies introduced the Richardson Real-Time Microscope, a complete imaging system that can image living samples in real time, in full color, and in normal condition without fixation, staining, or dehydration. Based on inverted dark-field contrast, the microscope offers magnifications of 12,000 to 15,000 times, resolutions at or below 185 nanometers, and detection limits of over 50 nanometers, within a time frame of 15 seconds. The microscope can also be easily switched to fluorescence mode.


SciMagix launched the CellMine HCS software suite for high-content screening. CellMine is an instrument- and application-agnostic HCS data repository developed on top of SciMagix’ Scientific Image Management System, the company said. CellMine HCS features workflow automation; fast image transfer, storage, and retrieval; data and application integration capabilities; support for disparate and evolving workflows; data navigation, mining, and visualization; and a multi-tiered Internet-based architecture.


Upstate introduced Pathway Profiler, a cellular readout assay service. The service enables researchers to measure the phosphorylation status of cellular kinases and their substrates in response to cell stimulation and inhibitor treatment. Upstate said the service can be used to confirm in vitro selectivity signatures for lead compounds, as well as to investigate off-target effects in customer-supplied cell lysates.

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