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Tecan Journal

Selected category: OEM

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Flexing Automation Capabilities

Many diagnostic laboratories rely on PCR-based tests to identify a range of illnesses, from gastrointestinal and respiratory infections to tropical diseases. However, processing the samples manually can be time consuming and prone to errors, limiting the number of tests that can be carried out in a day. Automation can increase throughput, but is not always practical for smaller laboratories that do not need to run hundreds or thousands of samples at a time looking for the same pathogen. Certest Biotec – a Spanish biotechnology company – has developed the VIASURE V-Flex, an automated and flexible workstation for nucleic acid extraction and PCR set-up, that can be used to run multiple different PCR reactions on a single plate.

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Powering Next Generation Genomics

Spatial genomics is a rapidly growing field, allowing researchers to explore gene expression in the context of tissue location. Vizgen has developed the MERSCOPE® Platform, the first commercial high multiplexing, high resolution in situ solution to combine single-cell and spatial genomics analysis. Powered by MERFISH technology, this system not only enables the visualization of gene expression, but also where – and to what abundance – genes are expressed in tissues.

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Novel methods guiding cancer treatment

Multiple myeloma (MM) remains an incurable blood cancer, but recent advancements in treatment have significantly improved patient prognosis and quality of life. UK-based specialist diagnostic company The Binding Site has developed a new strategy that monitors pre-cancerous conditions associated with MM as well as treatment success, helping to guide therapeutic pathways with more accurate information.

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Racing against a pandemic

The emergence and outbreak of the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 at the end of 2019 has created an urgent need for testing to help limit the spread of COVID-19. AusDiagnostics has used its patented, multiplexed-tandem PCR technology to develop a test to detect SARS-CoV-2 and distinguish between the different causes of coronavirus-like infections.

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Print your own DNA

The COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the globe has highlighted the need for the rapid development of new diagnostic tests, therapeutics and vaccines in response to emerging infectious diseases. Advanced gene assembly techniques represent a powerful tool to aid these efforts, and are currently allowing the construction of synthetic SARS-CoV-2 genomes for research and development activities. Codex DNA is at the forefront of this approach, using its knowhow and BioXp™ 3200 system to supply labs across the globe with the gene constructs required to accelerate the design and optimization of vaccines and treatments.

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Sensing success

Spanish company Advanced Wave Sensors (AWSensors) is playing a key role in the pan-European Horizon 2020 LiqBiopSens and Catch-U-DNA projects to develop a new liquid biopsy platform for the early detection of colorectal and lung cancers. An important part of this process was the creation of a liquid handling platform incorporating an acoustic wave sensor array and microfluidic technology for the analysis of biomarkers in blood.

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Long-read sequencing for improved analysis

Next generation sequencing is now in widespread use throughout the life sciences sector, but the commonly used short-read sequencing methods are often subject to GC base pair bias. Combined with the inherent mapping ambiguity of the short reads, this often results in fragmented genome assemblies, creating a demand for technologies offering longer reads that simplify analysis and yield more complete sequences. Using its proprietary technology, Pacific Biosciences is able to offer longer reads, more uniform coverage and high accuracy, supporting advanced genomics, full-length transcript sequencing and epigenetics.

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OEM instrument design offers automated patch clamping solution

Ion channels regulate many physiological processes, as well as playing a role in many diseases, making them a target for 20 percent of registered drugs. Patch clamping remains the gold standard assay for investigating ion channels, but the manual technique requires patience, and extensive training, and has a low throughput, resulting in ion channels remaining poorly understood.

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Pooling resources

Novartis has a long history of working with Tecan’s Partnering Business for the development of automated workstations for blood banking applications.

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