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Sequenom, New England Biolabs Ink Deal for Epigenetics Technology

By a GenomeWeb Staff Reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – New England Biolabs and Sequenom said after the close of the market on Tuesday they have signed a licensing and co-marketing agreement for the commercialization of tools for epigenetics research.

They also announced the launch of the first product stemming from the research collaboration, which served as the basis for the agreement, the EpiMark Methylated DNA Enrichment Kit from NEB.

As part of the deal, NEB will be Sequenom's first supplier of choice if the technology is used for prenatal diagnostic purposes. Sequenom retains all rights for diagnostic uses.

Financial and other terms were not disclosed.

The kit uses technology and intellectual property, methyl-CpG-immunoprecipitation, that Sequenom acquired from the University of Regensburg, Germany. The technology is for the discovery and analysis of differentially methylated regions in biological samples, such as differences in methylation between fetal and maternal chromosomes that can be used for non-invasive prenatal diagnostics, the two companies said.

The kit incorporates the methyl-CpG binding domain of human MBD2, fused to the Fc tail of human IgG1. Coupled to magnetic beads, the protein enables purification of methylated CpG DNA with superior sensitivity, accuracy, and speed, NEB and Sequenom said.

Large scale, high purity manufacturing of the protein has been enabled and optimized by NEB, which developed its kit to be user-friendly for researchers.

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