TRAC platform uses cell lysates and requires no mRNA extraction or amplification steps.

CRO Admescope will offer PlexPress’ TRAC (transcript analysis with the aid of affinity capture) platform for high-throughput gene expression analysis as part of its in vitro drug interaction and preclinical ADME-Tox services. Finland-based Admescope will initially offer Plexpress’ multiplex cytochrome P450 (CYP) assays. The firm says the service will meet FDA’s recent draft recommendations that cytochrome P450 mRNA analysis could provide more useful information in drug metabolism studies than measurements of CYP activity.

Plexpress’ TRAC platform enables multiplex gene-expression analysis to detect up to 30–60 transcripts per well in 96-well plates. Using just one 96-well plate and a pool of 30 probes, for example, 2,880 expression levels can be determined in a single four-hour run, the firm states.The technology uses magnetic bead-and-capillary electrophoresis to isolate mRNA directly from cell lysates. Requiring neither mRNA extraction nor PCR amplification, the technology is flexible, and can be fully automated for high throughput.

Earlier this month PlexPress announced that it would start offering TRAC in collaboration with SBW, an integrated CRO located next door to its own facility in Helsinki, Finland. In April Plexpress raised $2.3 million through a follow-on financing round with new and existing investors, to support commercialization of the TRAC technology, build up ADMET screening services, and develop TRAC specifically within the oncology sector.

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