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Promega, BioFocus DPI, Qiagen, Invitrogen

Promega has launched its CytoTox-Glo cytotoxicity assay, the company announced this week.
The assay measures a "dead-cell" protease biomarker released from cells that have lost membrane integrity. The assay uses a peptide substrate that releases luciferin after cleavage by the "dead-cell" protease. This is a substrate for Promega’s proprietary Ultra-Glo recombinant luciferase. The luciferase/luciferin reaction produces light in the form of a stable "glow-type" luminescent signal. The intensity of the signal correlates with dead-cell number.

BioFocus DPI this week announced the launch of ADME/PK Laboratory and the STructure-Activity Relationships for DRug OPtimization, or StarDrop,software platform.
ADME/PK Laboratory is the new name for the expanded BioFocus DPI ADMEnsa Laboratory service. ADME/PK Laboratory incorporates in vivo pharmacokinetics and bioanalysis.
The StarDrop software suite is an upgrade to BioFocus DPI’s ADMEnsa Interactive package. StarDrop has been expanded beyond the prediction of ADME properties to include interactive data visualization and compound modeling. The software integrates in silico predictions with in vitro and in vivo data to facilitate the design, prioritization, and selection of lead compounds.

Qiagen has launched the TransFect protocol database and two new DNA transfection reagents — Attractene transfection reagent and NanoFect transfection reagent, the company announced this week.
The TransFect database provides DNA, RNA, and siRNA transfection protocols for a wide range of cell types and plate or dish formats. The database enables researchers to access exactly the protocol needed by typing the cell type, nucleic acid, and plate format into Use of the TransFect database is free of charge and no registration is required.
Attractene reagent is a nonliposomal lipid that enables DNA transfection of adherent cells, including difficult-to-transfect cell types such as HaCaT, MonoMac6, and HCT116. This reagent is appropriate for a range of transfection applications, including transient or stable transfection, transfection of shRNA vectors, and DNA co-transfection, the company said. Attractene reagent is also suitable for use with automated systems.
NanoFect transfection reagent uses advanced nanopolymer technology for DNA transfection. NanoFect reagent is completely chemically synthesized, free of animal-derived components, and has been tested for the absence of endotoxins.

Invitrogen has launched its SuperScript human stem cell cDNA libraries, the company announced this week.
The cDNA libraries consist of complementary DNA isolated from commonly used, well-characterized human embryonal carcinoma and human embryonic stem cell lines. With the SuperScript libraries, researchers can begin to characterize key genes in the stem cell lines, allowing for the characterization of the gene expression profile at various stages of cell development, the company said.

The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.