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PerkinElmer, Tecan, Millipore, BioTek

PerkinElmer this week launched two new monochromator options for its EnVision multilabel plate reader: the absorbance monochromator, which measures absorbance assays with a single monochromator, and the fluorescence intensity monochromator, which measures absorbance and fluorescence intensity with two double-grating monochromators.  
The monochromator option can be combined with other EnVision options, including the time-resolved fluorescence Laser, and can be integrated into robotic systems such as PerkinElmer’s Janus automated workstation, the company said. EnVision is also optimized to read PerkinElmer’s proprietary AlphaLISA technology.

Tecan is launching the Infinite M1000, its new microplate reader, at LabAutomation 2008, to be held Jan. 27-30 in Palm Springs, Calif., the company said this week.
The high-end detection system has been optimized for time-resolved fluorescence energy transfer-based assays, as well as glow luminescence, fast luminescence, and dual-color luminescence assays, according to the company.
Tecan also said that the Infinite M1000 provides flexibility through its quad4 monochromators.
The Infinite M1000 has an optional injector module for up to two injectors, and can be combined with a stacker module or fully integrated with the Freedom EVO series of automated liquid handling workstations.

Millipore this week announced that it has added the MultiScreenHTS+ for radiometric kinase and GPCR assays to its MultiScreen line of filter plates.
The MultiScreenHTS+ filter plate has a mesh backing to create uniformly flowing wells to improve washing efficiency, the company said. According to the manufacturer, the new plate design reduces overall non-specific binding and reduces variability in both background and signal intensities. In-house validation testing showed a three-fold decrease in well-to-well variability and improved signal-to-noise ratio over traditional filter plates.

BioTek announced this week that its Liquid Handling Control software is now available for use with all of the company's liquid handlers including the ELx405 microplate washer and the MicroFlo select dispenser.
According to the company, intuitive StepWise protocol creation offers an unlimited number of methods to be programmed and run from a PC or directly from the instrument's keypad, and parameters can be printed for GLP compliance. In addition, the LHC software features automatic protocol validation to protect against errors.
The software can be used to program custom maintenance reminders, and Ultrasonic Advantage provides unattended washer manifold maintenance. Multiple instruments may be controlled in parallel with LHC software, and LHC software supports BioTek's Bio-Stack microplate stacker integrations for high-throughput applications.

The Scan

Octopus Brain Complexity Linked to MicroRNA Expansions

Investigators saw microRNA gene expansions coinciding with complex brains when they analyzed certain cephalopod transcriptomes, as they report in Science Advances.

Study Tracks Outcomes in Children Born to Zika Virus-Infected Mothers

By following pregnancy outcomes for women with RT-PCR-confirmed Zika virus infections, researchers saw in Lancet Regional Health congenital abnormalities in roughly one-third of live-born children.

Team Presents Benchmark Study of RNA Classification Tools

With more than 135 transcriptomic datasets, researchers tested two dozen coding and non-coding RNA classification tools, establishing a set of potentially misclassified transcripts, as they report in Nucleic Acids Research.

Breast Cancer Risk Related to Pathogenic BRCA1 Mutation May Be Modified by Repeats

Several variable number tandem repeats appear to impact breast cancer risk and age at diagnosis in almost 350 individuals carrying a risky Ashkenazi Jewish BRCA1 founder mutation.