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IBS Awarded $750K for Prototype Testing of PinPoint Mini Sequencer

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Intelligent Bio-Systems has been awarded $750,000 through the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center's Accelerator Program, the center said in late December.

The Waltham, Mass.-based company is developing two different sequencing systems — the Max-Seq Genome Sequencer, which it is developing in conjunction with Danaher Motion's Dover and Azco BioTech and launched in April, and the PinPoint Mini, a smaller, lower-cost version of the Max-Seq that will be aimed at clinical applications.

As reported by In Sequence sister publication GenomeWeb Daily News, IBS will use the new funds to finish building prototypes of the Mini and to move its systems into beta-testing at customer labs.

Both the Mini and the Max-Seq systems are based on technology licensed from Columbia University. The Max-Seq also incorporates optics technology from Dover's Polonator, which was developed in George Church's lab at Harvard (IS 8/9/2011).

While Azco is responsible for distributing and servicing the Max-Seq, as of last August, the firms had not partnered on the distribution of the Mini system.

The Max-Seq can generate up to 100 gigabases of data per run and, according to Azco, it costs around 10 percent less than the list price of the Illumina GA. The system has protocols for 35-base pair and 55-base pair reads and boasts a per-run cost that is 35 percent lower than the GA or SOLiD, according to Azco.

Last year, IBS said that it planned to launch the Mini in 2012 at a cost of $85,000 (IS 3/29/2011). It estimated its sequencing reactions would cost around $75 per base and that the machine would have a throughput of up to 80 gigabases.

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