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Alpha Innotech, Schleicher & Schuell BioScience, Drug and Market Development Publications, Blueprint Initiative


Alpha Innotech of San Leandro, Calif., last week released its Fluor Chem 5500 Imaging System. The instrument can be used for visible light imaging of 1D and 2D gels, as well as for a variety of other visible light, fluorescent, and chemiluminescent applications.

The system increases resolution to over 1.1 million pixels and uses noise reduction algorithms to increase the signal-to-noise ratio for a 12-bit dynamic range. It also documents, archives, and analyzes the samples.

Schleicher & Schuell BioScience of Keene, NH, this week launched its FAST Frame multi-slide plate for high-throughput processing of microarrays. It is designed for use with 16-pad FAST Slides and the slides' corresponding 16-well incubation chambers.

The plate can process 64 arrays at a time and is compatible with typical automated liquid handling systems and with eight-channel manual pipettors.

Drug and Market Development Publications this week released a report entitled Protein Arrays: Commercial Opportunities, Legal Trends, and Technology Analyses, in which it announced that it expects the protein array market to grow by 85 percent between now and 2006. Its market analysis, among other topics, examines the differences between market potentials for high-density and low-density arrays, the trend among protein array companies to become more product-focused, and the issue of intellectual property ownership. The complete report is available at


The Blueprint Initiative of Toronto announced last week that it had upgraded its Biomolecular Interaction Network Database and software. Upgrades to the BIND Data Manager web software include an improved linking structure for accessing BIND data, improved visualization for mass spec-derived interactions, and the integration of BIND text queries with the PreBIND text mining system.

Additional changes to BIND include the following: BIND will be broken into three divisions based on the molecule’s source organism to make the system’s size more manageable, BIND datasets will be provided on the ftp site for comparative analysis, and datasets will be divided into three categories — publication, experimental system, and taxonomy.

In addition, with one universal accession space, only one set of accession numbers will now be used for the three different types of BIND data records: interactions, complexes, and pathways.


The Scan

Study Finds Sorghum Genetic Loci Influencing Composition, Function of Human Gut Microbes

Focusing on microbes found in the human gut microbiome, researchers in Nature Communications identified 10 sorghum loci that appear to influence the microbial taxa or microbial metabolite features.

Treatment Costs May Not Coincide With R&D Investment, Study Suggests

Researchers in JAMA Network Open did not find an association between ultimate treatment costs and investments in a drug when they analyzed available data on 60 approved drugs.

Sleep-Related Variants Show Low Penetrance in Large Population Analysis

A limited number of variants had documented sleep effects in an investigation in PLOS Genetics of 10 genes with reported sleep ties in nearly 192,000 participants in four population studies.

Researchers Develop Polygenic Risk Scores for Dozens of Disease-Related Exposures

With genetic data from two large population cohorts and summary statistics from prior genome-wide association studies, researchers came up with 27 exposure polygenic risk scores in the American Journal of Human Genetics.