16 May 2011

Nanotech + Sequencing

With Illumina's recently released TruSeq v3 Cluster kits producing up to 600 Gb of data per run (!), there's no doubt that we are getting more information and coverage for our hard-earned research dollars. While the quality and depth of sequence is increasing, this doesn't really matter to clinicians. Noblegen Biosciences, a Massachusetts startup is trying to change that. While no industrial-scale prototype has been developed, the company, funded by the National Human Genome Research Institute, is building on nanopore-genome sequencing technology. With a goal of being able to accurately call 1000 bases per second (theoretically scaled up to cover an entire human genome 30x in 15 minutes!), the company aims to bring fast and cheap sequencing to the clinic. No word on technology specifics, or how they plan to analyze all this data in a speed/manner that is reflective of the quick sequencing time. It will also be interesting to see how their technology compares to that of Oxford Nanopore, which has not released any commercial product. While it is still early days, I'll be keeping an eye out for future developments.
MIT Technology Review Article by Katherine Bourzac: Simpler Genome Sequencing

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