OCTOBER 31, 2008 -- Spartan Bioscience Inc. (Ottawa, Ontario) and NorDiag ASA (Bergen, Norway) say they will partner to develop a fast, easy to use, end-to-end DNA preparation and analysis system costing less than $30,000.
Spartan Bioscience is a molecular diagnostics company that develops, manufactures, and markets DNA analyzers for on-demand applications. NorDiag ASA is a Norwegian biotechnology company that develops, manufacturers and markets automated nucleic acid sample preparation instruments and magnetic bead-based reagents for assays that require the purification of nucleic acid from difficult clinical samples such as urine, feces, sputum and tissue. The system they will develop will enable DNA fingerprinting for forensics and other applications.
The basis of the collaboration is each company's lab equipment which both have very small bench footprints and are easily portable. Pricing for individual systems is expected to be less than $15,000 each when both instruments are released in 2009.
"The combination of the NorDiag 'Arrow' DNA isolation device with the Spartan DX-1 2 DNA analyzer has the potential to change the playing field in the DNA analysis space," said Mark Kershey, VP Corporate Development, Spartan Bioscience. "With a combined price tag expected to be less than $30,000 there will be nothing else like it. Each device is designed to complete its processing of 12 samples in 30 minutes or less making the entire workflow possible in less than an hour. This capability and its affordability will open DNA analysis to labs around the world."
"Tailoring our sample preparation to DNA analyzing platforms is an important element of our strategy. We believe that small flexible and affordable systems will enable smaller labs to widen their menu of diagnostics tests being offered," said NorDiag CEO Marten Wigstol. "Even more important, new DNA based tests using samples such as urine, faeces and sputum will open up new markets and we believe that a small affordable solution is perfect for such emerging tests."
The companies are unveiling their respective early prototypes at this week's Association for Molecular Pathology (AMP) meeting and exhibit.