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Jul 31, 2019

Mesa Biotech RSV

San Diego, California-based molecular diagnostics developer Mesa Biotech has launched a respiratory syncytial virus test on its sample-to-answer point-of-care PCR system, the Acula. The RSV test is the second test on the system, which also runs an influenza A/B test and is exclusively marketed in the US by Sekisui under the Silaris brand. It was cleared by the US Food and Drug Administration and CLIA-waived last year for diagnostic use in both children and adults.

Jul 29, 2019

GridIon Mk1

Oxford Nanopore Technologies has launched GridIon Mk1, an upgrade to the GridIon X5 sequencing platform that will start shipping this week. It contains more powerful GPU technology, specifically a Nvidia Volta GV100 card, so basecalling now only requires 10 percent of the GPU resource. In addition, power requirements have been simplified, which increases the stability of the platform.

Jul 23, 2019

BioDot Rainmaker

Irvine, California-based BioDot has launched its Rainmaker picoliter volume printing platform. According to the liquid handling company, Rainmaker allows researchers to use up to 24 independent tips to dispense volumes ranging from 20 pL to several nLs at high speed. BioDot said the tool's programmable drop size and precision controls allow users to shrink assays to improve performance and reduce costs, while optimizing for rheology or surface characteristics. 

Jul 22, 2019

Clear Labs Clear Safety Listeria, Environmental Mapping Testing

Menlo Park, California-based Clear Labs has launched new Listeria testing and environmental mapping capabilities on its Clear Safety next generation sequencing platform.

According to Clear Labs, Clear Safety now catalogs the genetic "fingerprint" of a Listeria sample and compares it to the fingerprints of Listeria previously encountered within a company. The platform can now detect, speciate, and characterize up to seven Listeria species ( monocytogenes, grayi, innocua, ivanovii marthii, seeligeri, and welshimeri) in a single analysis.

Clear Labs also noted that researchers can use the platform's similarity analysis to distinguish resident from transient subtypes of Listeria in the food manufacturing environment, which groups samples containing Listeria with matching fingerprints and tags them with metadata including location, date, and time. The firm's environmental mapping tool then overlays Listeria contamination on a facility map, allowing the team to track the flow of particular subtypes of Listeria through a facility over time. 

Jul 18, 2019

Menarini Silicon Biosystems VRNxT Volume Reduction Tool

Italy-based Menarini Silicon Biosystems has launched its new VRNxT automated volume reduction instrument, which removes manual sample reduction steps in cellular biology workflows. The sample prep firm said that the instrument reduces pipetting steps by using rotational motion to reduce hands-on time up to 90 percent and eliminate operator variability. The system can simultaneously process up to four samples and reduces sample volume to about 12.5 μL in 25 seconds and approximately 2 μL in about eight seconds. Menarini claims the tool will add precision and accuracy to rare-cell and single-cell analysis, minimizing the loss of samples and increasing workflow throughput. While the system has been developed to standardize Menarini's DEPArray's workflow, the firm said that researchers can use the tool for broader applications in volume reduction.

Jul 17, 2019

3M STEC Tests

3M has introduced two genetic assays for food safety testing that detect Shiga toxin-producing E. coli. The assays are compatible with the St. Paul, Minnesota-based firm's loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) instrument, the 3M Molecular Detection System.

The 3M Molecular Detection Assay 2 - STEC Gene Screen (stx and eae) detects the genes for Shiga toxin types 1 and 2, in addition to the intimin gene that allows the bacteria to attach to intestinal cells. The firm's 3M Molecular Detection Assay 2 - STEC Gene Screen (stx) specifically detects Shiga toxin genes.

Jul 15, 2019

NanoString Alzheimer’s Disease Research Panels

Seattle-based NanoString Technologies has developed a set of new nCounter gene expression panels for use in Alzheimer's disease research, which it created and tested in collaboration with the MODEL-AD consortium. The two panels — one for use in mouse studies and another for human studies — measure the expression of 770 genes covering 30 modules discovered in a recent study of human brain tissue. The firm noted that both panels are available for purchase through its website.

Jul 12, 2019

HTG Molecular EdgeSeq Data Analytics Software Version 1.2

HTG Molecular Diagnostics has released an updated version of its HTG EdgeSeq Reveal data analytics software. According to the firm, the software allows customers to streamline sample analysis processed on the HTG EdgeSeq platform. The version 1.2 update contains improved functionality, offering data analysis from the firm's HTG EdgeSeq Precision Immuno-Oncology Panel, the HTG EdgeSeq Oncology Biomarker Panel, and the HTG EdgeSeq Mouse mRNA Tumor Response Panel.

Jul 11, 2019

Co-Diagnostics Vector Smart NAM Test

Co-Diagnostics has launched its Vector Smart NAM test, which the firm said can be used to identify the presence of West Nile virus, St. Louis encephalitis, and western equine encephalitis in mosquito populations. According to Co-Diagnostics, the assay uses multiplex PCR to help centers identify locations of the diseases. 

Jul 11, 2019

Circulomics Short Read Eliminator XS, XL

Circulomics has launched two new versions of its Short Read Eliminator kit for the depletion of short DNA fragments from high molecular weight DNA samples. The Short Read Eliminator XS kit depletes DNA up to 10 kb in size and the Short Read Eliminator XL kit DNA up to 40 kb. While Circulomics designed the kits for use with its Nanobind DNA extraction kits, researchers can also use them with other DNA extraction methods.

Jul 11, 2019

Bio-Techne RNAscope HiPlex Assay

Bio-Techne released its multiplex in situ hybridization RNAscope HiPlex Assay for tissues. It enables researchers to gain insights into cellular mechanisms and functions by combining a simplistic workflow with the capability of simultaneously detecting up to twelve RNA targets, the firm said.

The research-use-only assay is an expansion of the Advanced Cell Diagnostics RNAscope platform, an advanced in situ hybridization system that enables visualization of single-molecule gene expression with single-cell resolution directly in intact tissues.

Jul 02, 2019

ZeptoMetrix NATtrol Respiratory Verification Panel

ZeptoMetrix has released the NATtrol Respiratory Verification Panel, a 20-member respiratory panel for use by laboratories in QC applications with molecular diagnostics for infectious disease testing. ZeptoMetrix was founded in 1999 and is based in Buffalo, New York.

Jul 01, 2019

Cellecta Dual-sgRNA Libraries

Cellecta has commercially launched its dual-sgRNA libraries designed for CRISPR activation (CRISPRa) and CRISPR interference/repression (CRISPRi) genetic screens. With the modified systems, the firm said it has re-engineered the standard knockout capacity to modulate gene activitiy. The variations extend the types of genetic screenings possible. 

According to Cellecta, its dual-sgRNA CRISPRa and CRISPRi libraries improve single-sgRNA library activity because each construct expresses two different sgRNA binding distinct sites on the promoter of each gene target. The firm believes this advantage increases the likelihood that each targeted gene will be activated or repressed above a given threshold when compared to libraries that only have a single sgRNA targeting a gene promoter. 

Jun 28, 2019

23andMe MUTYH-Associated Polyposis Report

23andMe has launched a new genetic health risk report for MUTYH-Associated Polyposis (MAP), one of three main hereditary colorectal cancer syndromes. According to the firm, the report examines two genetic variants in the MUTYH gene, Y179C and G396D, associated with MAP. The firm will offer the report to new Health + Ancestry Service customers as well as existing 23andMe Health + Ancestry Service customers genotyped on its most recent platforms.

Jun 28, 2019

BillionToOne Unity Prenatal Screen

BillionToOne has commercially launched its Unity prenatal screening assay. According to BillionToOne, the assay is powered by its molecular counting technology and is the only prenatal screen that tests cell-free fetal DNA for cystic fibrosis, spinal muscular atrophy, and sickle cell disease using only one tube of the mother's blood. The firm said it will make the test available at select clinics through its early access program, with plans for a broader commercial launch later this year. 

Jun 26, 2019

AutoGen Xtract 16+

AutoGen has launched its Xtract 16+ system, which it said provides fast and high-quality DNA or RNA from molecular diagnostic, biological, clinical, and forensic sample types. According to AutoGen, the instrument can simultaneously process between 1-16 samples. The Xtract 16+ also provides full traceability of kits and samples through real-time, app-based monitoring, which automatically generates reports for LIS/LIMS. 

Jun 26, 2019

Thermo Fisher Scientific Invitrogen Collibri DNA Library Prep Kits

Thermo Fisher Scientific has launched several Invitrogen Collibri DNA Library Prep kits for use with high-throughput Illumina sequencing systems. The kits contain a tracking dye to visualize the library prep process and to show that reagents have been properly mixed. The dyes do not interfere with enzymatic reactions and do not affect the sequencing results. Four versions of the kit are available, for either physically sheared or enzymatically sheared DNA, and involving either PCR or no PCR. All kits contain adapters with unique dual indexes or combinatorial dual indexes that enable up to 24 or 96 samples to be pooled for sequencing.

Jun 26, 2019

Porvair Sciences Drosophila ChIP Kits

Porvair Sciences has launched its commercial ChIP kit range dedicated to Drosophila. The new kits deliver high-quality ChIP-ready chromatin from tissue from as little as five Drosophila specimens. According to Porvair, the new kits offer improved sensitivity. The new Chromatrap range includes Drosohila UniqSeq, ChIP-Seq, Antibodies, and Primer Sets. 

Jun 26, 2019

Expedeon Lightning-Link Metal Labeling Kits

Expedeon announced this week that it has introduced Lightning-Link Metal Labeling Kits for multiple immunoassay-based applications to support single cell analysis. According to Expedeon, the new kits will allow users to enhance the phenotypic analysis of heterogeneous cell populations, providing increased multiplexing capability compared to fluophore labeling, improved sample throughput, and research output. The firm also noted that the labeling kits only require about 30 seconds of hands-on time. 

Jun 25, 2019

GenScript Enhanced GenBrick Gene Synthesis Service

GenScript has launched an upgrade to its GenBrick Gene Synthesis platform, which gives researchers access to DNA sequences up to 200 kilobases long with 100 percent accuracy. GenScript said it has optimized the genome assembly process and enhanced its technology to better handle difficult sequences. It has also developed new technology to quickly and accurately create long DNA sequences in one step that are free of any mutations or negative clones. 

The GenBrick service has been tested and used in synthetic biology projects such as the Synthetic 2.0 Yeast Genome (Sc2.0) project, where it synthesized the long arm of yeast chromosome VI. 

Jun 24, 2019

Phitonex NovaFluor Dyes

Phitonex has launched a new suite of NovaFluor dyes, which the firm said allows researchers to rapidly increase the number of scientific questions they can answer per cell on extant flow cytometry instrumentation. According to Phitonex, the platform helps engineer optical properties to provide high resolution single cell analysis with flow cytometry. 

Jun 20, 2019

Phase Genomics ProxiMeta Platform

Phase Genomics has launched its new ProxiMeta platform, which includes a 8-pack ProxiMeta kit with cloud-based ProxiMeta Analysis. According to the firm, the platform allows users to assemble hundreds of genomes and associated plasmids, phages, and antibiotic resistance, and interactions between genetic elements in microbial cells and communities. Phase said that the eight-reaction kit uses improved chemistry, includes reagents needed to prepare a sequencing-ready library from a microbiome sample, and does not require specialized equipment.

According to the firm, applications include antimicrobial resistance genes discovery, capturing phage and horizontal gene transfer, understanding the relationship between the microbiome and the resistome, and high-quality metagenome assembly from microbiome samples.

Jun 19, 2019

Cytek Biosciences Aurora Flow Cytometer

Cytek Biosciences is launching the latest version of its Cytek Aurora flow cytometry system featuring five lasers and the ability to detect more than 30 colors from a single sample without changing optical filters. The system can be used with any fluorochromes excited by the onboard lasers, and offers high resolution of dim and rare populations, Cytek said. The system simplifies workflows, saves costs, and allows access to a greater choice of dyes and specificities for applications that require deep profiling of cell populations in a single sample, the company added.

Jun 19, 2019

BGI 676 Quality Genome Standard

BGI has introduced the 676 Quality Genome, a new standard and cost-effective solution for high quality de novo genome assembly using MGI's DNBSEQ and stLFR technologies. BGI defined the standard as having a contig N50 greater than 106 bases (>1Mb), scaffold N50 greater than 107 bases (>10 Mb), and, for the human genome, total assembled size larger than 6 Gb. The firm expects the standard's cost to be $1,000, on the upcoming MGISEQ-T7 sequencing platform.

According to BGI, the 676 Quality Genome can detect all types of structural variants and is ideal for assembling regions of the genome not well represented by the reference genome. The firm said that the 676 Quality Genome provides more accurate and comprehensive genetic predictions, since it assembles each person's genome individually and does not depend on a reference genome.

Jun 18, 2019

Biocept NGS Breast Panel

Biocept has launched its second multi-gene liquid biopsy product, the Target Selector NGS Breast Panel, which is run on Thermo Fisher Scientific's Ion Torrent next generation sequencing platform and is designed to enable the detection and monitoring of actionable genomic biomarkers associated with breast cancer. The company said the test, which will be marketed to physicians and researchers, has shown over 99 percent sensitivity with at least 90 percent specificity in internal validations. 

Pages

New research shows that scientists need to do a better job of including a wider diversity of African genomes in their analyses, STAT says.

A new paper in Science shows that men are still winning a large majority of the most sought-after NIH grants.

Nature Research and the Estée Lauder Companies are awarding efforts to encourage girls to pursue careers in the STEM fields.

In Science this week: beneficial genetic variants inherited from archaic Neanderthal and Denisovan hominins, and more.