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454 Life Sciences, Epicentre Biotechnologies, Promega, GenBank, Frost & Sullivan

454 Life Sciences has launched two new plate formats for the GS FLX: A “short read” kit for 100 bp reads that will produce 30-40 Mb of data per run, and a “long read” kit for 250-300 bp reads.
The company has also updated the GS FLX mapper and assembler software modules. The updated software will be provided at no charge to current GS FLX customers and will be included with new installation of the system. It can incorporate Sanger sequencing reads for assembly or mapping, including paired-end reads for assembly. In addition, it can integrate GS FLX data with existing third party software tools, such as Consed.

Epicentre Biotechnologies has released the TAQXpedite PCR system for fast end-point PCR, and TAQXpedite GREEN Real-Time PCR for fast real-time PCR. The products promise reproducible and fast PCR results by using a highly efficient and unique thermostable enzyme blend in conjunction with master mixes that contain a PCR enhancer with betaine. They work with traditional PCR/qPCR instrumentation and take 16 minutes to obtain end-point PCR results and 30 minutes for real-time PCR results.

Promega has launched Plexor HY for DNA quantification down to 6.4 picograms of autosomal or Y-chromosomal DNA. The product quantifies human and male DNA in a single analysis using the same dilution of DNA standards. It is compatible with a number of qPCR instruments, including the Applied Biosystems 7500 and 7500 FAST real time PCR systems and Stratagene Mx300P and Mx3005P quantitative PCR systems.

GenBank release 161.0 is available via FTP from the National Center for Biotechnology. It contains data as of Aug. 14. The new release contains 79,525,559,650 base pairs and 76,146,236 entries. Uncompressed, the 161.0 release flat files require about 299 GB for sequence files only. The ASN.1 data require approximately 245 GB.

Frost & Sullivan has published a new report, “Strategic Analysis of US Genomics Markets.” According to the report, revenues in this market totaled $1.85 billion in 2006, and are likely to reach $3.69 billion in 2012.

The Scan

Wolf Howl Responses Offer Look at Vocal Behavior-Related Selection in Dogs

In dozens of domestic dogs listening to wolf vocalizations, researchers in Communication Biology see responses varying with age, sex, reproductive status, and a breed's evolutionary distance from wolves.

Facial Imaging-Based Genetic Diagnoses Appears to Get Boost With Three-Dimensional Approach

With data for more than 1,900 individuals affected by a range of genetic conditions, researchers compared facial phenotype-based diagnoses informed by 2D or 3D images in the European Journal of Human Genetics.

Survey Suggests Multigene Cancer Panel VUS Reporting May Vary Across Genetic Counselors

Investigators surveyed dozens of genetic counselors working in clinical or laboratory settings, uncovering attitudes around VUS reporting after multigene cancer panel testing in the Journal of Genetic Counseling.

Study Points to Tuberculosis Protection by Gaucher Disease Mutation

A mutation linked to Gaucher disease in the Ashkenazi Jewish population appears to boost Mycobacterium tuberculosis resistance in a zebrafish model of the lysosomal storage condition, a new PNAS study finds.