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Illumina Inks Co-Marketing Pacts with Caliper, Sage Science for Next-Gen Sequencing Sample Prep

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Illumina said today that it has inked separate co-marketing agreements with Caliper Life Sciences and Sage Science to promote use of those companies' sample prep systems in next-generation sequencing applications.

Under the first agreement, Illumina will promote Caliper's LabChip XT, a preparative microfluidic platform for separating DNA fragments of different sizes that uses multi-channel disposable chips to run up to four samples in less than 30 minutes. Caliper said that the platform was developed "with direct input" from Illumina.

In addition, Illumina will help market Caliper's LabChip GX, which is used to analyze the size, concentration, and integrity of DNA or RNA as a quality-control step during sample preparation.

Caliper said that its platforms are automated alternatives to traditional gel electrophoresis methods for next-generation sequencing library construction and assessment, and will provide users of Illumina's Genome Analyzer and HiSeq 2000 with "more accurate and higher throughput solutions for sample analysis and sizing, significantly reducing manual manipulations while improving data quality and sample-to-sample consistency."

Under a separate agreement, Sage Science said that Illumina will promote its Pippin Prep, a preparative gel electrophoresis system that also automates the separation and recovery of different sized DNA fragments.

Sage said in a statement that its customers have found that sequencing libraries generated using Pippin Prep have greater sequence diversity and less low molecular weight contamination than those produced by traditional gel methods, generating higher quality sequencing data, and more data per run.

Illumina's co-marketing pacts come on the heels of rival next-gen sequencing outfit 454 Life Sciences said that it had recently inked a worldwide co-promotional agreement with Fluidigm for the companies' amplicon sample prep and high-throughput sequencing platforms to enable inexpensive and highly targeted sequencing (see current issue of PCR Insider).

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