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Kapa, Roche NimbleGen Partner on NGS Library Prep

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Kapa Biosystems has partnered with Roche NimbleGen to provide next-generation sequencing library preparation products, the firms announced today.

Under the agreement, Kapa will custom manufacture library preparation products for Roche NimbleGen to distribute to its customers. Specifically, the new offering combines Kapa's library preparation kits with Roche NimbleGen's SeqCap EZ line of sequence capture products.

In addition to the Kapa library preparation kits, Roche NimbleGen will also introduce other reagents to support the target enrichment workflow.

"Our partnership with Roche NimbleGen brings together complementary, best-in-class products for target enrichment, enabling higher quality sequencing across a broad range of sample types and DNA inputs," John Foskett, co-founder and chief technology officer of Wilmington, Mass.-based Kapa, said in a statement.

The partnership with Kapa follows on a tumultuous year for Roche's next-generation sequencing products. Last year, as part of a restructuring of its Applied Science unit, Roche shut down its NimbleGen microarray business, while integrating its NimbleGen sequence capture products with its 454 sequencing business as part of a new group called Sequencing Solutions. As part of that restructuring, Roche said it would only continue offering the NimbleGen in-solution products, not its chip-based capture products.

In October, the company announced plans to shut down its 454 Life Sciences next-generation sequencing business — laying off around 100 employees, planning a phase-out of the sequencers in mid-2016, and closing its 454 facility in Branford, Conn.

Roche intends to stay in the next-gen sequencing business, however, and in September it announced a deal with Pacific Biosciences, whereby PacBio would develop diagnostic products for Roche based on its SMRT technology.