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DNA Link Joins Powered by Affymetrix Program, Developing Forensics Test

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – South Korean genomics-based biotech firm DNA Link has signed a Powered by Affymetrix Program agreement providing it a worldwide license to develop and commercialize a forensic test using Affy's microarray technology and the South Korea FDA-cleared GeneChip System 300Dx v.2, Affy announced today.

DNA Link has developed a SNP marker-based assay called AccuID Chip for personal identification. The chip combines Affy's target resequencing array technology and multiplexing PCR technology, resulting in the genotyping of hundreds of SNP markers in a single experiment. The chip can also be used on a variety of forensic samples, including DNA samples, Affy said.

"The advantage of using SNP markers is that they possess lower mutation rates than STR markers, thus are more stable in terms of inheritance which could aid parentage testing, kinship analysis, ethnicity, or predicting phenotypic characteristics," Jong-Eun Lee, CEO of DNA Link, said in a statement. "This novel forensic test, AccuID Chip, can be used complementarily with existing STR tests and to build a more comprehensive forensic database."

DNA Link is headquartered in Seoul and specializes in SNP research and personalized genomics. Its AccuID Chip is not available in the US as an in vitro diagnostic.

Dara Wright, vice president of Clinical Applications Marketing for Affy, added that DNA Link is the first Powered by Affymetrix partner in South Korea and will provide other partners in the program access to the personalized genomics market in that country.

Powered by Affymetrix allows other companies to license GeneChip technology to develop microarray products. Other partners in the program include Roche Diagnostics, Johnson & Johnson's Veridex, and BioMérieux.

Financial and other terms of the deal with DNA Link were not disclosed.