Company Announcements

In April, Fluidigm named Brad Kreger as senior vice president, Global Operations. Previously, he served as senior director, Manufacturing Operations, Clinical Next­ Generation Sequencing Division, at Thermo Fisher Scientific. Molecular Devices announced in April the combination of its Biologics BioTherapeutics division with Pall’s ForteBio division to form the Biologics Solutions business unit. Beginning in July, the Biologics Solutions business unit will manage both the ForteBio and Biologics BioTherapeutics product portfolios under the newly created biologics brand within Molecular Devices. NanoString Technologies announced in April commercial partnerships with five CROs (Covance, Cancer Genetics, Core Diagnostics, Propath UK and an undisclosed company) that will market services based on its Digital Spatial Profiling technology through a Technology Access Program.  

Gene-based Instruments

Company Announcements

In March, PolySkope Labs entered into an agreement to place Thermo Fisher Scientific's Applied Biosystems QuantStudio 5 Real-Time PCR systems and reagents in customer labs for use with its food pathogen testing kits. In April, genomic analysis firm Genoox announced a collaboration with optical mapping firm Bionano Genomics to develop a genome informatics workflow to integrate and annotate Bionano structural variant calls with sequencing data within the Genoox platform. Canon BioMedical named Molecular Biology Systems as the exclusive distributor of its NEXTGENPCR instrument, consumables and accessories in the US and Canada.  

Product Introductions

In March, SGI-DNA introduced the BioXp Libraries, synthetically designed variant libraries for rapidly building diverse synthetic DNA fragments including degenerate, scanning and variant libraries, using its BioXp System. In April, Rheonix expanded its Beer SpoilerAlert assay to now detect over 60 bacterial and yeast spoilage organisms plus 4 hop resistance genes using its Encompass Optimum workstation.  

Cell-based Instruments

Company Announcements

Nexcelom Bioscience, a provider of cell counting and analysis technologies, announced in March the receipt of a strategic investment by Ampersand Capital Partners. In April, BioTek Instruments and Agilent Technologies integrated their respective Seahorse XFe96/XFe24 Analyzers and Cytation 1 Cell Imaging Multi­Mode Reader to combines cellular metabolic analysis and imaging technologies. The combination allows researchers to toggle between XF data, brightfield images and fluorescence images in a unified software experience. The jointly marketed solution debuted in the US and Europe in April,  and will launch in the rest of the world in June. MILabs, a maker of preclinical imaging systems, announced in April that 2017 sales grew close to 50% for the third year in a row. Phasefocus, provider of the Livecyte live-cell imaging solution, named Bulldog Bio as a North American distributor in April. In April, Yokogawa Electric established the Single Cellome Co­innovators' Consortium with research groups led by Professor Kenichiro Todoroki and Assistant Professor Hajime Mizuno of the Laboratory of Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Shizuoka. The Consortium will leverage research in the field of single-cell MS to create systems to analyzing single cells, including development of a single­-cell sampling function that can be flexibly combined with other analytical methods, the incorporation of a sensing function to directly measure the conditions in a living cell and functions that will enable the direct injection of genes or drugs into cells. Drs. Mizuno and Yokogawa have jointly developed a system that uses a Yokogawa confocal bioimaging technology to capture images of cytoplasm that has been extracted from target cells and analyzes that material using MS. In May, Dolomite Bio and Partek announced a collaboration to combine their respective Nadia droplet-based single-cell technology and Partek Flow analysis software for analyzing gene expression patterns in single cells using an integrated workflow. In May, ClearLight Diagnostics, an early-stage developer of an automated, next generation tissue processing and 3D imaging/image analysis platform, named CSO Laurie Goodman, PhD, as interim CEO. The company also announced the completion of a $2.8 million financing round. TTP and Camena announced a collaboration in May to develop an instrument to monitor the health of cell cultures to be used in biologics manufacturing. The project is led by Innovate UK and GSK. Camena’s small molecule detection technology allows researchers to monitor metabolite levels in cell cultures.  

Product Introductions

In March, Yokogawa Electric introduced the CellLibrarian high-­content data management system for facilitating the retrieval and categorization of huge volumes of microscopic images. It is designed for use with the CellVoyager series high­-throughput cytological discovery systems. The CellLibrarian platform is based on OMERO Plus, Glencoe Software's customized distribution of the OMERO image data management system built by the Open Microscopy Environment consortium. In April, Union Biometrica announced the launch of the COPAS Vision large-particle flow cytometer, which adds brightfield imaging to the COPAS’ large-particle sorting capabilities. BD debuted in April the BD FACSymphony S6 cell sorter, which offers 6-way sorting and supports analysis of up to 30 parameters. As many as 9 spatially separated lasers can be added to the system. In April, Merck KGaA released the new compact CellStream benchtop flow cytometer, featuring 7 laser capacity, up to 22 detection channels and detection using a camera. Agilent Technologies introduced in May the Agilent Seahorse XF Real-Time ATP Rate Assay Kit for its Agilent Seahorse XF Technology, calling it the first assay of its kind that provides a live-cell measure of ATP production rates from both mitochondria and anaerobic glycolysis based on XF technology. The Kit enables researchers to measure and quantify the rate at which cells produce ATP. In May, Harvard Bioscience’s Multi Channel Systems (MCS) subsidiary launched the Beta Cell-System, a non-invasive beta cell screening system for diabetes research utilizing multi-electrode array technology.  

Sales and Orders of Note

In March, MILabs announced that Italy’s Istituto Oncologico Veneto has acquired its latest generation VECTor5CT system. In April, Berkeley Lights announced the sale of its Beacon platform to Sanofi to accelerate the cell line–development process.  

Protein-based Instruments

Company Announcements

Quanterix’s 2017 sales grew 30.1% to $22.9 million (see Bottom Line). Adjusted operating loss totaled $25.4 million versus $20.8 million a year ago. Product sales grew 33.2% to make up 62% of sales. Service and Other revenue rose 53.2% to make up 34%. Collaboration and License revenue declined 45.5% to account for 5%. The company estimated 61% of customers are in pharma/biotech/CRO and the remainder in academia, with neurology, oncology, infectious diseases and cardiology representing 72%, 16%, 6% and 5% of total revenues, respectively. In March, Quanterix announced a collaboration with DestiNA Genomics, a manufacturer of reagents for nucleic acid detection, to transform microDNA biomarker detection. The initial efforts are focused on the development of a nucleic acid assay for direct detection and quantification of the liver toxicity biomarker microRNA-122. DestiNA’s chemistry enables the direct and specific detection of microRNAs without the need for sample purification or amplification. Quanterix will be offering the microRNA-122 assay in its Simoa Accelerator Lab.  

Product Introductions

CEM introduced in January the new Liberty PRIME automated microwave peptide synthesizer, which utilizes a new methodology for solid phase peptide synthesis. It features a two minute complete cycle time (at 0.1 mmol scale).  

Sales and Orders of Note

In March, Gyros Protein Technologies announced Oxford BioMedica has invested in two Gyrolab xPlore systems, marking the first time the Gyrolab technology has been applied within the gene and cell therapy area. Carterra announced in April the purchase of its Carterra LSA label-free, high-throughput monoclonal antibody characterization instrument by the nonprofit Institute for Protein Innovation. In April, Carterra announced the purchase of the Carterra LSA by LakePharma, the first CDMO to do so.

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