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Roche Diagnostics, DxS, Agilent Technologies


Roche Diagnostics has finally launched its AmpliChip CYP450 microarray-based assay in the United States. The product, whose launch was delayed four weeks [see SNPtech Reporter, June 6, 2003], enables diagnostic labs to identify mutations in the CYP2D6 and CYP2C19 genes.

Roche said it expects the AmpliChip product to generate more than $100 million by 2008. The company will sell the AmpliChip CYP450 initially as an ASR in the United States, where it will be used by CLIA-certified labs performing CYP2D6 and CYP2C19 genotyping tests. Roche also said it expects the test to be available as an in vitro diagnostic in the United States and Europe in 2004.

Roche has said it plans to develop and sell by the end of 2004 similar assays for HIV-1 resistance genotyping, p53 cancer resequencing, colorectal cancer risk prediction, cystic fibrosis, and human papilloma virus genotyping.

DxS has launched a novel product designed to simplify sample collection for genotyping studies. The product, SAFEspot Blood Collection Card, is a blood sample-collection and -storage system based on an adsorbent matrix, DxS said. In contrast to more common genetic material collection, which requires collecting liquid blood samples, SAFEspot uses dried blood collected from a finger stick that can be shipped at ambient temperature rather than frozen.

From each 2-inch by 4-inch card, sufficient DNA is captured for over 200 separate SNP, micro-satellite, or other genetic analyses. A card and return-address envelope are provided, DxS said in a statement last week.

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases has begun distributing 300 Affymetrix-brand GeneChip microarrays containing SARS gene-sequence data.

Through an alliance with Affymetrix and the Institute for Genomic Research, NIAID has purchased some 300 of the SARS microarrays, which contain the 29,700 DNA base pairs of the SARS coronavirus based on sequence data obtained from research centers in the United States, Canada, and Asia, the NIAID said.

The NIAID’s Pathogen Functional Genomics Research Center, which is operated by TIGR, will manage placement of the chips, which will be distributed at no cost to “qualified” researchers.

Agilent Technologies has introduced its Human 1B Oligo Microarray Kit for gene-expression analysis in drug discovery and disease research. Together with the existing Human 1A Oligo kit, the two-microarray set comprises more than 36,000 genes and transcripts. The 1B kit is also believed to be the industry’s first human 60-mer oligo microarray set available in standard 1-inch by 3-inch glass slide format.

The standard content on the 1B array complements the existing 1A array, which consists of probes for well-recognized genes from publicly available databases. The 1B array comprises 19,000 probes with a “focus” on “rarer” human genes obtained from Incyte’s LifeSeq Foundation sequence database.

Both the 1A and 1B microarrays contain comprehensive annotation, enabling customers to access information from public sequence databases or Incyte LifeSeq databases for additional bioinformatics data about the genes.

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