ALAMEDA, Calif.--GeneTrace Systems has been awarded two Small Business Innovation Research grants to conduct functional genomics studies. The US National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences has supplied a grant for the further development of the company's high-throughput single-nucleotide polymorphism analysis capabilities using mass spectrometry. The goal is to evaluate human samples for polymorphisms in genes that may modify the risk of disease in response to environmental factors.
Another US government organization, the National Cancer Institute, is funding gene expression monitoring of multiplexed cancer gene sets and their responses to changes in their environment as part of the institute's Cancer Genome Anatomy Project. One difficulty in cancer cell analysis is the propensity for each tumor to have unique mutations. These differences are reflected in the expression of RNA and proteins in cancer cells. GeneTrace's high-throughput expression capability will be applied to the comprehensive molecular characterization of normal, precancerous, and malignant cells, evaluating multiple genes in many samples.