The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has announced that it is partnering with Pierce Biotechnology, a unit of Fisher Biosciences, as a preferred vendor to conduct protein sample analysis using Pierce's SearchLight™ multiplex-profiling technology.
Pierce will provide standardized, sensitive multiplex analysis for secreted protein expression in samples submitted by the NIH, including the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases and other affiliated NIH organizations.
"The SearchLight system is a robust, extremely sensitive reproducible technology," said Ron Lowy, President and Chief Executive Officer of Fisher Biosciences.
"This agreement demonstrates the confidence that the NIH places in Pierce's SearchLight technology."
The SearchLight multiplex protein analysis will provide NIH investigators with quantitative measurement of changing protein levels in both human and animal sera, plasma and tissue culture samples.
Protein analysis categories include angiogenesis factors, biomarkers, cell adhesion molecules, chemokines, cytokines and cytokine receptors, growth factors, matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and neurotrophic factors.
This information is useful in the discovery of disease mechanisms and potential therapies.
Elevation or suppression of specific proteins can point to certain diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), diabetes, obesity, migraines and a host of inflammatory diseases.
It is also useful in understanding the cause of disease as well as determining the effectiveness of drug therapies.
The SearchLight system is a multiplex sandwich ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) in a planar, 96-well plate-based array format, with the ability to measure up to 12 secreted proteins simultaneously per well.
The addition of patented SuperSignal® ELISA Femto Chemiluminescent Substrate produces a luminescent signal that is detected using the SearchLight® CCD Imaging and Analysis system.
The level of signal produced is proportional to the amount of each protein in the original standard or sample.
The SearchLight sample testing service is designed to provide the ability to customize arrays, enabling clients to select as many or as few proteins of interest from a menu of more than 200 validated SearchLight assays.
A single SearchLight multiplex ELISA can provide data equivalent to 12 separate ELISAs.
"We are able to look at proteins in very low abundance," said Lowy. "We can detect small changes in populations and identify differences. SearchLight technology is extremely sensitive, efficient and cost-effective."