[Source: jro-grafik/fotolia]
[Source: jro-grafik/fotolia]

SomaGenics announced it will receive a Phase I grant from NIH’s National Human Genome Research Institute for a cell-free (cf) DNA liquid biopsy platform that will allow researchers to analyze and log single-stranded DNA fragments that are less than 100 nucleotides long. The platform, called RealSeq®-DC, is an extension of the company’s existing platform, RealSeq®-AC, which permits the preparation of small RNA sequencing libraries.

Both of SomaGenics’ RNA- and DNA-based RealSeq platforms are thought to aid researchers in finding biomarkers in biofluids (such as blood and saliva). The biomarkers have the potential to drive early drug development, as well as inform early disease diagnosis and detection, including fetal genetic disorders and certain cancers. Sergei Kazakov, Ph.D., principal investigator and vp of discovery research at SomaGenics, noted the RealSeq-DC technology is well-suited to sequencing cancer-specific single-stranded DNA fragments, and said the company expects it to become “a critical platform for identifying cf-DNA biomarkers for cancer.”

Somogenics is also developing other platforms for the construction of microRNA sequencing libraries and for messenger RNA (mRNA) analysis. It already offers some analysis platforms that quantify fragmented RNA.

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