AnaSpec this week announced the launch of its SensoLyte 520 Histone Deacetylase Activity Assay Kit. The kit detects HDAC enzymes, which modulate gene expression and play a role in cell cycling, apoptosis, and differentiation. As a result, HDACs are often chosen as a therapeutic target for cancer and neurodegenerative diseases.
“The shift in excitation/emission that is offered allows the SensoLyte 520 HDAC Activity Assay Kit to avoid the autofluorescence interference from cell components and test compounds that is commonly found in traditional HDAC assay kits,” the company said in a statement.
The assay kit, which can be used to measure HDAC activity directly in cell cultures in a 96-well plate, involves a two-step homogeneous procedure for measuring HDAC activity using a cell-permeable fluorogenic substrate, thus eliminating the need for cell extraction. The kit, according to AnaSpec, can also be used for high-throughput screening of HDAC inhibitors using extracts or purified enzymes.
Cambridge, UK-based Lab21 announced this week that it is offering an epidermal growth factor receptor mutation test in addition to its KRAS mutational analysis service in Europe.
Lab21 and Amgen in March announced a partnership to introduce in 22 EU countries a real-time PCR-based diagnostic for Amgen’s colorectal cancer drug Vectibix.
Furthermore, Germany’s Merck KGaA announced in May that Erbitux, which it licensed from ImClone System and sells in Europe, received a recommendation from the European Committee for Human Medicinal Products as a first-line treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer in patients with KRAS wild-type tumors in combination with chemotherapy.
According to Lab21, “other clinical data suggests that patients with mutations in their EGFR gene may also not respond to inhibitor drugs for the treatment of cancers because antibodies and small molecule drugs cannot bind to the receptor.
“This means the receptor is not inhibited, and treatments such as Iressa and Tarceva may not work,” the company said in a statement.
The EGFR test, like the KRAS test, is developed by DxS and is CE-marked in Europe.