Illumina unveils its next generation genetic analysis platform with the claim that it provides greater throughput, enhanced automation, and improved ease for researchers conducting genotyping and gene expression studies.
The iScan System is a high-resolution scanner that supports the imaging of Illumina's BeadChip-based genetic analysis products allowing the researcher to correlate genetic variation and biological function.
It is designed so the system will allow large-scale interrogation of human genome variations, accelerating the ability of researchers to cost-effectively unlock the genetic basis of disease.
In addition the system is set to enhance drug discovery and clinical research, allowing diseases to be detected earlier, and permit better choices of drugs for individual patients.
Using the scanner's sub-micron resolution, assay automation, and laboratory information management systems options, researchers can produce up to 225 million genotypes per day with one scanner.
Its potential is fully realised when hooked up to the Ilumina's recently launched Infinium High-Density (HD) Human1M-Duo and Human610-Quad Genotyping BeadChips, and Illumina's laboratory information management systems.
Genotyping studies have been completed up to six times faster than studies run on Illumina's BeadStation when using the iScan System.
"As our products become more complex, especially in the areas of high-density genotyping, copy number variation analysis, and gene expression profiling, it is important to have a scanner that keeps pace with the needs of genetic research," said Jay Flatley, president and CEO of Illumina.
"Using our multi-sample iSelect BeadChip, researchers can process 120 samples in just 60 minutes, producing results in record time."
Already, leading pharmaceutical, biotech, and university researchers have embraced microarray genotyping technology. In late-stage clinical trials for example, microarray genotype analysis are used to classify patient populations to eliminate poor or toxic responders from key Phase III trials.
In addition, once a drug is on the market, patient classification is used to accelerate drug expansion into new indications through faster, smaller, more definitive Phase IV trials, or to establish medical superiority of a late-to-market drug relative to entrenched competitors in an important class of patients.
Researchers at Scripps Genomics Medicine and Translational Science Institute are using the iScan System along with the Human610-Quad BeadChips to identify genetic determinants of cardiovascular disease towards more effective diagnostics and preventive strategies for this global health problem.
After scanning fewer than 100 BeadChips, Scripps researchers have reported call rates averaging 99.8 per cent, which are consistent with Illumina's existing high call rates for the BeadStation.
In addition to this, the Institute also plan to use the iScan System to bolster their services offerings, which includes analysing genetic markers within the Scripps biorepository to identify promising research opportunities.
Illumina expect to commence broad commercial shipment of the iScan System in the second quarter of 2008.