NEW YORK – Veranome announced on Thursday that it entered into a collaboration and licensing agreement with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories to bring the latter's in situ sequencing and data analytics technologies into Veranome's spatial omics portfolio.
As part of the collaboration, Veranome and CSHL plan to develop a range of new applications using CSHL's BARseq platform, invented by CSHL professor Anthony Zador, which enables in situ sequencing of neurons in their native context. This allows researchers to couple gene expression with neural mapping and neuron subtype classification, potentially providing a more fine-grained picture of how the brain is wired.
Coupling CSHL's assays with Veranome's advanced imaging capabilities is expected to expand the range of applications available to customers, such as characterization of cell and gene therapy methods and CRISPR screens. Veranome also intends to develop the newly acquired assays into offerings meant to improve profiling of archival formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded, or FFPE, tissue blocks with the same spatial resolution as fresh frozen samples when analyzed on Veranome's Spatial Analyzer.
"We see tremendous opportunities in both basic research and drug discovery for applying Veranome's in situ sequencing technology," Brian Hilbush, head of applications at Veranome Biosystems, said in a statement.
"The most exciting application we envision is for the characterization of CRISPR-based screens in model organisms," Hilbush added. "Current methods such as single-cell sequencing lack spatial resolution and are unable to track gene editing events and their consequences in a tissue context for CRISPR models. The new technology will provide further insights by enabling correlation of CRISPR edits with gene expression changes, cellular morphology, and the tissue microenvironment in these CRISPR-engineered organisms."
Veranome and its collaborators plan to have several posters and presentations at this year's Advances in Genome Biology and Technology conference, held April 4-6. Highlights include presentations on using Veranome's spatial biology toolkit to illuminate mammalian brain taxonomy, using the company's FISH workflow to spatially analyze FFPE samples, and the presentation of a "highly reproducible and robust system" for subcellular in situ single-cell spatial transcriptome profiling of human brain tissue.
Last year, Veranome also partnered with Portal Bioscience to develop new spatial transcriptomics products using Portal's Proxal probe ligation-based biochemistry for tracking fragmented RNA.