Applied Biosystems has signed an agreement with Eagle Research and Development to collaborate on the further development of a single molecule detection device invented by Eagle that can eventually correlate DNA and its expressed proteins with specific disease states a portable device.
Eagle's patented technology, currently in prototype stage, is designed to identify and quantify molecules based on their electronic charge signatures.
Applied Biosystems believes the technology could have implications for advancing personalized medicine based on its potential for protein and nucleic acid identification, protein-protein and protein/small molecule interaction measurements, and DNA sequencing.
The miniature silicon device constructed by Eagle consists of an array of nanopores, with each nanopore containing embedded semiconductors or field-effect transistors (FETs). As single molecules are driven through a nanopore by a voltage differential, the three-dimensional charge profile of a molecule is measured by the FETs, enabling each molecule in the sample to be uniquely identified and precisely quantified.
The Eagle device is designed to measure a molecule's three-dimensional electronic charge profile directly without the use of fluorescent or other labels, thermal cycling or optics. Compared to other nanopore-based technologies for measuring molecules using electronic signals, the Eagle approach can achieve a 1,000-fold higher sensitivity as a result of the FETs embedded in the nanopores.
As part of the agreement, Applied Biosystems has received an exclusive two-year option to license the technology, during which time the intention is to focus initial development support and feasibility testing for applications in protein identification and detection of protein-binding events.