ZyGEM Acquires Microlab Diagnostics to Commercialize Breakthrough DNA Detection and Testing Platform
News May 28, 2010
ZyGEM intends to market products integrating its DNA extraction, reagent and detection assays with the breakthrough microfluidic chip technology developed by MicroLab, which will operate as a business unit of the new company. These integrated new products will dramatically decrease the time, complexity and cost of conducting DNA testing and have transformational potential in a broad range of applications.
Data presented at a recent scientific meeting demonstrated that a prototype of the new system produced accurate DNA results in less than an hour, comparable to results obtained with current technology requiring three separate instruments and five to 10 hours. The new technology has the potential to revolutionize DNA testing for the many applications where accuracy, speed and ease-of-use are critical, including, forensics, biodefense, point-of-care diagnostics and food pathogen testing.
“Combining ZyGEM’s unique assays and reagents with MicroLab’s revolutionary microfluidic chips will enable us to greatly expand the utility of DNA detection for both existing and new applications,” said Paul Kinnon, chief executive officer of ZyGEM. “Even better, the transformative power of our technology is not a future dream—we have already presented data confirming our ability to achieve accurate results with unprecedented speed and ease-of-use. We intend to rapidly develop and commercialize our new platform with the help of selected partners.”
MicroLab Diagnostics has developed advanced microfluidics chip technology that is exclusively licensed to the new company. MicroLab’s miniaturization of the entire DNA testing process within a single closed system has many advantages. It significantly reduces the amount of sample and reagents that are needed while virtually eliminating the chances for handling error or contamination. The ZyGEM/MicroLab system is compact, easy-to-use and cost-effective, making it suitable for use both in the laboratory and out in the field. It can perform multiplexed analyses and can also be configured for specific applications. Portable handheld versions are in development.
Researchers have created a portable and fast-acting test that can distinguish Ebola infections from other fever-causing infectious diseases such as Lassa fever and malaria in around 30 minutes. Although further testing is required, this could be useful during febrile disease outbreaks.READ MORE