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National Center for Genome Resources, Waters, Aclara BioSciences, Amersham Biosciences

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The National Center for Genome Resources has released PathDB version 2.0, a research tool for scientists interested in analyzing their experimental or computational data in the context of biological pathways and networks. The software is both a data repository and a system for building and visualizing cellular networks. Uses include finding all pathways and phenotypes associated with genes in a cluster or validating computationally predicted associations with known biological data. Version 2.0 includes improvements in data modeling and data acquisition. The data model has changed from a concrete model of metabolism, primarily supporting curation from literature, to an abstract model for all kinds of cellular function, e.g. signal cascade, gene regulatory, protein-protein interaction, and protein-small molecule binding data, as well as metabolism. The client download is available from NCGR’s web site at http://www.ncgr.org/pathdb. PathDB 2.0 is free for non-commercial users; commercial users can evaluate the client download model for free.

Waters has introduced MassLynx 4.0, a security manager product for its Mass-Informatics platform. It facilitates secure quantitative analysis in 21 CFR 11-compliant laboratories, allowing researchers to configure over 70 access privileges for individual and grouped users. Furthermore, Waters has introduced the latest version of QuanOptimise, a plug-in for Mass-Informatics that allows multi-compound quantification studies through a graphical user interface.

Aclara BioSciences has launched its eTag assay system for studying multiplexed gene and protein expression. Specific molecular binding events that occur during a reaction result in the release of electrophoretically distinct eTag reporters, which are then resolved, allowing quantitation of multiple analytes directly from cell lysates. For high-throughput multiplexed protein analysis of secreted proteins or cell-surface antigens, Aclara has developed eTag multiplex protein proximity assay methods. The eTag assay system will be commercialized under a license-based access program that includes gene expression profiling, protein expression analysis, and cell-surface antigen assays. The program includes eTag reagent kits and software, custom assay services, and consulting support.

Amersham Biosciences has released a CD-ROM version of “Protein Purifier,” a protein purification teaching program. Users can choose from a variety of chromatographic techniques to design purification protocols for 20 different protein samples.

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