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RainDance Extends Capabilities of Sequence Enrichment Solution

Published on October 22, 2009 at 8:29 PM

RainDance Technologies, Inc., a leading provider of innovative microdroplet-based solutions for human health and disease research, announced today it will extend the capabilities of its Sequence Enrichment Solution by offering Methyl-Seq and Ultra-Deep Resequencing applications.

In a presentation at the 59th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Human Genetics, the company said these enhancements represent a significant expansion of the RainDance technology platform’s capabilities. They will enable researchers to use their RDT 1000 instruments for epigenomic and ultra-deep resequencing studies that can accurately characterize the molecular basis for cancer and other destructive diseases.

“Methyl-Seq and Ultra-Deep Resequencing will provide exciting new tools to our customers’ research methodologies,” said Christopher McNary, President and Chief Executive Officer, RainDance Technologies. “Now scientists can apply our Sequence Enrichment Solution to gain better understanding of how disease cells differ from normal cells, enhancing their understanding of the origins and pathways of complex diseases.”

Methyl-Seq Allows Use of PCR-Based Enrichment and Next-Generation Sequencing for Higher-Resolution Epigenomic Studies

RainDance said its Methyl-Seq application will provide scientists with new capabilities for epigenomics research, a field recognized in a National Institutes of Health Roadmap as having exceptionally high potential to transform biomedical research. The study of epigenomics explores how factors such as environment can change gene expression and gene activity over time in a manner that heightens susceptibility to disease.

The Methyl-Seq application will allow researchers, for the first time, to combine PCR-based sequence enrichment with the power of next-generation sequencing platforms to perform epigenomic studies at significantly higher resolution. By studying methylation patterns with single-base resolution across targeted regions of the genome, researchers can get a better understanding of epigenomic variation and can discover opportunities to develop new treatments for cancer and other complex diseases.

“Methyl-Seq enables the targeted amplification and next-generation sequencing of bisulfite-converted DNA for the identification of methylated bases in the genome with greater accuracy and quality of data,” said McNary.

Ultra-Deep Resequencing Enables PCR-Based Enrichment to Accurately Characterize Variance in Heterogeneous Samples

RainDance’s Ultra-Deep Resequencing application enables the use of the company’s PCR-based Sequence Enrichment Solution to accurately characterize rare variants in highly heterogeneous samples, such as those found in cancer tumors. Studies suggest that rare genetic variants may play significant roles in tumorigenesis, pathogenesis, and disease progression. Previously, ultra-deep resequencing of heterogeneous samples with standard PCR approaches has been difficult because of the loss of accurate DNA representation.

“The unique compartmentalization capability of our RainStorm microdroplet-based technology provides highly efficient amplification of all sequence variants in the sample,” McNary said. “This ensures that accurate representation and a high depth of coverage are maintained for ultra-low frequency variants.”

Both the Methyl-Seq and Ultra-Deep Resequencing applications will be commercially available during the first half of 2010. They will utilize the RDT 1000 system’s proven consumables and reagents.

“The capabilities of these new applications, plus the expanded-content DNA primer libraries and WGA sample protocols announced last month, make the RDT 1000 a highly flexible genomic research platform that easily integrates with any next-generation sequencing workflow,” said McNary. “Both the Methyl-Seq and Ultra-Deep Resequencing applications are simple to use and integrate seamlessly with our Sequence Enrichment Solution. Our applications will help researchers rethink their approaches to discovery as they unlock the cures for the world’s most devastating diseases,” he said.

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