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Affymetrix Named Distributor for ScreenCell's CTC Research Products

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) —Affymetrix and ScreenCell this week announced a distribution pact that will make Affy the exclusive distributor of ScreenCell's isolation devices and dilution buffers for use in certain assays.

ScreenCell's products are designed for the collection of circulating tumor cells in peripheral blood. Affy will distribute the kits for use in combination with a number of approaches including microarray, fluorescence in situ hybridization, and other non-PCR-based assays, such as Affy's branched-DNA-based QuantiGene ViewRNA assays. The firms noted that ScreenCell's products are available as components of Affy's newly launched QuantiGene ViewRNA CTC platform.

According to ScreenCell's website, its kits can be used with other approaches not named in the statement, including next-generation sequencing and PCR-based assays.

George Bers, vice president and general manager of Affy's Panomics expression business unit, in a statement called the deal a "powerful combination" for oncology research. According to Bers, ScreenCell's products are designed to isolate rare cells of "potentially significant prognostic and predictive value in cancer," while Affy's QuantiGene assays are designed to detect single RNA transcripts in single CTCs and rare cells.

"Today we are launching our CTC platform, which combines our highly sensitive and specific QuantiGene ViewRNA Assay with ScreenCell's isolation devices," said Bers. "We believe this platform may potentially have a dramatic impact on disease detection, enabling researchers in translational sciences to further examine the impact on treatment, management, and outcome in cancer."

Privately held ScreenCell is based in Paris and maintains a North American office in Westford, Mass., while Santa Clara, Calif.-based Affy maintains sales and marketing offices and distribution hubs around the world.

Financial terms of the deal were not discussed.

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