SOURCE: Circulomics Inc

Circulomics - DNA Extraction, Multiplex miRNA, and Single Molecule Technologies

February 07, 2017 10:13 ET

Circulomics Awarded $1.5M SBIR Phase II Grant to Develop PicoSep Single Molecule Analysis System

PicoSep Will Act As Foundation for New Tools to Analyze Nucleic Acid Sample Quality

BALTIMORE, MD--(Marketwired - February 07, 2017) - Circulomics has been awarded a $1.5M SBIR Phase II grant by the National Institutes of Health (NIH)/National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) to develop a single molecule platform for DNA/RNA sample quality analysis based on PicoSep technology.

PicoSep is a single molecule instrument that can perform accurate sizing and quantification of DNA/RNA while consuming only picoliters of sample and 20 molecules of DNA. Sizing occurs through a simple hydrodynamic mechanism based on the flow behavior of DNA in small buffer-filled microcapillaries. This unique mechanism allows for rapid and accurate sizing of DNA/RNA across a wide range of sizes including small DNA oligonucleotides and high molecular weight DNA. Quantification is performed by direct single molecule counting of the size-separated DNA.

The first products to be developed will be kits for RNA/DNA integrity analysis and high molecular weight DNA sizing. The sensitivity of single molecule counting will enable detection of minute amounts of degradation. The unique hydrodynamic mechanism will enable faster sizing of high molecular weight DNA (100 kb+) than electrophoresis methods. Beyond these first products, PicoSep can be combined with novel molecular assays to examine other nucleic acid characteristics such as conformation and quality.

As genomics tools become increasingly sophisticated, rising emphasis is being placed on nucleic acid sample quality. According to CEO Dr. Kelvin Liu, "We see great opportunity in developing new tools to not only extract high quality DNA/RNA but also to better characterize it before analysis. PicoSep offers an alternative to capillary electrophoresis that is fast, sensitive, and highly informative."

This Phase II grant will build upon previous Phase I work and drive the continued development of the PicoSep instrument, separation cartridges, and assay kits. This award brings Circulomics' total funding to nearly $5.8M and further catalyzes the development of its Nanobind sample preparation, Ligo-miR microRNA assay, and PicoSep single molecule technologies into a comprehensive portfolio of tools to streamline genomics research and molecular diagnostics.

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