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GEN News Highlights : Jul 26, 2010

Axela Takes Over Xceed for Ziplex Automated Gene-Expression Analysis Platform

Firms claim combined technologies will help speed introduction of new biomarker diagnostics.

Axela has acquired Toronto-based Xceed Molecular to get its hands on the latter’s Ziplex® gene-expression analysis platform and assays. The combined firm will retain the Axela name but move its headquarters to Xceed’s facilities in Toronto. Axela says the combination of both companies’ technologies will provide clinical researchers with a growing suite of products for multiplexing DNA, RNA, and protein biomarker analysis, and help speed the introduction of new diagnostics.

Xceed’s Ziplex platform has been developed as an integrated and fully automated hybridization system for multiplex gene-expression signatures. The system hinges on Xceed’s Flow-Thru Chip (FTC) technology for multi-analyte analysis, which is embodied in the single-use TipChip consumables that feature self-regulating fluidics. The technology is designed to enable automated hybridization and imaging in a microplate format within a single instrument.

The Ziplex System is available for research use in North America, together with an expanding family of TipChips, and Xpress Chips with preconfigured content. Products in development include the Colon Cancer Xpress Chip, which is undergoing prerelease validation by academic collaborators at Emory University, and a renal cell carcinoma signature, which the Emory team is validating for use as a laboratory test.

Axela’s flagship product is the the dotLab System, which incorporates diffractive optics technology (dot®) for the detection of molecular-binding events without the use of fluorescent labels. The firm claims the system and suite of PanelPlus™ tools and services have broad applications in areas ranging from research-based studies in epitope mapping, expression monitoring, protein quantitation, and assay development, to clinically relevant work in biomarker validation, assay development, immunogenicity testing, and multiplex analyte detection.