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Products & Services: May 5, 2011

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Exiqon has launched its customizable Pick & Mix microRNA qPCR arrays.

The system allows for the design of a qPCR array based on pre-validated locked nucleic acid-enhanced miRNA PCR primers via an online array configuration tool, according to the company. The array-configuration tool guides customers through selections including choice of format — 96-well or 384-well plate format — array layout, target organism, miRNA assays, controls, and real-time PCR instrument of choice.

The arrays are delivered ready to use, Exiqon said.

The Scan

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.

Study Explores Animated Digital Message Approach to Communicate Genetic Test Results to Family Members

In the Journal of Genetic Counseling, the approach showed promise in participants presented with a hypothetical scenario related to a familial hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome diagnosis.

Computational Tool Predicts Mammalian Messenger RNA Degradation Rates

A tool called Saluki, trained with mouse and human messenger RNA data, appears to improve mRNA half-life predictions by taking RNA and genetic features into account, a Genome Biology paper reports.

UK Pilot Study Suggests Digital Pathway May Expand BRCA Testing in Breast Cancer

A randomized pilot study in the Journal of Medical Genetics points to similar outcomes for breast cancer patients receiving germline BRCA testing through fully digital or partially digital testing pathways.