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SomaGenics Wins NHGRI Grant to Develop Cell-Free DNA Sequencing Tech

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – SomaGenics announced that it has received a one-year grant worth $269,718 from the National Human Genome Research Institute to develop a DNA version of its RealSeq small RNA sequencing platform.

The first version of the company's platform — RealSeq-AC — enables the preparation of small RNA and RNA fragment sequencing libraries, and is being developed with National Institutes of Health funding. With the latest grant, SomaGenics aims to adapt the technology into a new platform — RealSeq-DC — for the construction cell-free DNA (cfDNA) libraries for next-generation sequencing.

"Because cancer-derived cfDNAs are highly fragmented and nicked DNA molecules, they are not efficiently captured by current DNA-seq library construction methods," Sergei Kazakov, vice president of discovery research at SomaGenics, said in a statement. "The RealSeq-DC technology is well-suited to sequencing cancer-specific single-stranded DNA fragments that are less than 100 nucleotides in length with high sensitivity and accuracy. We expect it to become a critical platform for identifying cfDNA biomarkers for cancer."