Biogazelle has announced that it is serving a reference laboratory for Bio-Rad’s QX200™ Digital Droplet PCR™ system (ddPCR) in Europe. This extends Biogazelle’s and Bio-Rad’s long-term partnership for PCR-based solutions.
As a reference laboratory, Biogazelle uses ddPCR in its R&D programs and shares its ddPCR user experience with the PCR community.
In addition, Biogazelle is acting as a ddPCR service provider for third parties who are interested in outsourcing a study. In addition, the Biogazelle laboratory also serves as a live research environment for prospective QX200 system customers.
Professor Jo Vandesompele, co-founder of Biogazelle, welcomes the agreement: "We are a young and dynamic company, eager to learn from and to teach the PCR research community. Being a reference center for ddPCR is completely in line with our mission to address unmet needs through excellence in science and technology."
Digital PCR is a nucleic acid quantification method with unprecedented resolution and relative sensitivity. It can determine how many nucleic acid target molecules are present in a particular sample by counting how many miniaturized reactions are positive if the template is partitioned into 1000’s of parallel reactions.
The QX200 system uses droplets as partitions to perform ddPCR. It is a flexible and high throughput instrument with an optimal number of partitions per sample. Both probe and dye based assays can be used.
Biogazelle is at the forefront of digital PCR-based research, as it was one of the first European laboratories that had access to the technology in 2012. The co-founders are also co-author on the digital MIQE guidelines (Huggett et al., Clinical Chemistry, 2013).
Biogazelle is working on various ddPCR projects, including (i) gene copy number quantification to determine the stability of transgenic cells or organisms, (ii) splice variant quantification, (iii) quantification of pathogenic organisms, and (iv) rare event detection for cancer diagnostics and monitoring of patient response to treatment.
By sharing its expertise in assay development, experiment design and nucleic acid quantification, Biogazelle aims to serve the digital PCR community. In addition, Biogazelle will use its experience to provide digital PCR services for academic and industrial customers.
Dr. Jan Hellemans, co-founder of Biogazelle, acknowledges the great potential digital PCR holds for clinical diagnostics. "Data interpretation is quite straightforward and results can easily be shared and interpreted among different users because absolute concentrations are determined. Moreover, its inherently high precision, accuracy and relative sensitivity are relevant features for laboratory tests that are used in the clinic. Biogazelle is proud to accelerate ddPCR discoveries, bringing ddPCR closer to the clinic."