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Product Watch: May 26, 2011

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BD Diagnostics this week announced the US launch of its BD Max platform for use as an open system.

The BD Max Open is a six-color version of the company's BD Max system, a fully automated, bench-top molecular system that performs cell lysis, nucleic acid extraction, and PCR set-up, amplification and detection.

The system is designed to perform a broad range of molecular tests – including in vitro diagnostic assays and laboratory-developed tests – as well as user-defined protocols and life science research applications.

Earlier this month, BD Diagnostics announced the European launch of the system and said that it had partnered with Belgium's Diagenode to develop seven CE-Marked molecular diagnostic assays for the platform (PCR Insider, 5/12/11). These assays will include a panel for diagnosing respiratory infections, two panels for diagnosing virus- and parasite-based gastrointestinal infections, and a panel for differentially diagnosing meningitis, the company said this week.

In a statement, BD said that it intends "a steady stream of announcements regarding agreements with best-in-class IVD assay developers to bring new tests to the BD MAX System for a broad range of disease categories."


Bio-Rad this week said that it has released a free MIQE qPCR app through Apple's App Store.

The app provides researchers with resources and checklists needed to ensure MIQE (Minimum Information for Publication of Quantitative Real-Time PCR Experiments) compliance for their qPCR experiments.

Sponsored by Bio-Rad and developed by Michael Pfaffl, a professor at Technische Universität München, and Afif Abdel Nour, an associate professor at the Institut Polytechnique LaSalle Beauvais, the MIQE qPCR app helps researchers achieve accuracy, transparency, and reproducibility in their qPCR experiments by allowing them to monitor MIQE compliance using color-coded checklists; obtain expert advice; stay up to date on the most current qPCR resources, references, and news; and contribute to MIQE guideline development by submitting project checklists to a worldwide database, Bio-Rad said.


Mo Bio Laboratories this week launched the PowerWater Sterivex DNA isolation kit.

The new product is the only kit available to isolate genomic DNA from Millipore's Sterivex filter units without the need for enzymes or hazardous organic chemicals, Mo Bio said.

The kit's cell release solution releases microbes from the Sterivex filter units without extensive incubation times or cutting open the plastic casing holding the membrane, enabling purification of high-quality DNA in 40 minutes, the company said. In addition, inhibitor removal technology provides inhibitor-free DNA from all types of water samples, even those containing heavy amounts of contaminants. The isolated DNA is ready to use in downstream applications including PCR and qPCR, Mo Bio said.


Cambio last week launched the HaloPlex target-enrichment kit for next-generation sequencing.

According to the company, the kit uses improved PCR technology that enables millions of PCR reactions in a single tube. Following fragmentation using specifically selected restriction endonucleases, and denaturing of the DNA sample, a selector probe library is added. Each probe, designed to hybridize to both ends of a targeted DNA restriction fragment, guides the targeted fragments to form circular DNA molecules. Only circular DNA targets are amplified, and are ready for sequencing using any next-generation procedure.

According to the company, the kit reduces costs and saves up to 80 percent in sample preparation time compared to competing products.

The Scan

Close Panel Vote on Califf Nomination

The New York Times reports there was a close committee vote to advance the nomination of Robert Califf to lead the US Food and Drug Administration to the full Senate.

Task Force Reports on Scientific Integrity

Nature News writes that that a new task force report recommends that the US establish a cross-agency scientific integrity council.

Across the Hall

Genetic testing, closed-circuit cameras, and more show how a traveler, without any contact, infected others at a New Zealand quarantine facility, CNN reports.

Science Paper Examines Influence of Chromatin Modifications on Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

In Science this week: genes regulating chromatin modification may contribute to OCD risk.