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Linkage Biosciences Unveils LinkSeq(TM) – a Revolutionary New Tool for Immunogenetic Testing


11/19/2009 11:30:57 AM

SAN FRANCISCO, California, November 18, 2009 - Linkage Biosciences, Inc., a privately held molecular diagnostics company, recently unveiled LinkSeq™ -- a new one-step method for Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) testing -- at the annual meeting of the American Society of Histocompatibility and Immunogenetics (ASHI) in San Francisco. Much faster than other HLA testing methods currently available, LinkSeq™ is a proprietary sequence-specific priming (SSP) chemistry that can be analyzed utilizing real-time PCR platforms.

"Lab professionals have been waiting for a faster method of HLA testing for years and we're excited to be able to offer a solution that not only saves precious time and labor, but also uses equipment that many labs already own, eliminating upfront costs," said Zachary Antovich, President and CEO of Linkage Biosciences. "We are very pleased by the positive reaction from leading medical labs to the LinkSeq™ product line and look forward to helping them achieve their goals. We are addressing a significant market opportunity for HLA testing, estimated to be in excess of $270 million globally."

HLA genes encode cell-surface proteins that are essential elements of the immune system. These proteins are a major factor influencing immunity, autoimmunity, genetic disease, and tissue transplantation. Current methods of testing typically rely on gel electrophoresis or nucleic acid probing techniques. These methods require substantial time, labor, and skilled laboratory workers; even then, data analysis is often complicated and time consuming.

With LinkSeq™, the actual labor time is under 15 minutes with results ready in about 90 minutes, a significant improvement compared to the 4-6 hours typically required by other HLA testing methods. In addition to saving time, LinkSeq's single step process reduces the potential for contamination since samples are handled only once and then sealed in reaction plates.

"LinkSeq™ is a major improvement in the workflow for HLA typing. I like the quick turnaround times and easy set-up; just add DNA to a tube and pipette into the reaction plate. Very straightforward," said Dr. Elizabeth Trachtenberg, Director, HLA/Immunogenetics Laboratory, Children's Hospital and Research Center Oakland.

LinkSeq's innovative chemistry, an end-point PCR process, utilizes SYBR® Green to detect HLA genes. Once the PCR amplification process is completed, SYBR® Green fluorescence is detected via the real-time PCR platform to identify specific HLA genotypes. Gels and probing steps are eliminated and data analysis is simplified with the company's SureTyper™ software, automating the entire process.

"LinkSeq™ chemistry combined with SYBR® analysis provides clear and defined results. Scale-up is easy too, since the trays can be run on common thermal cyclers prior to analysis. This is an attractive feature," said Dr. Shalini Pereira, Director, Clinical Immunogenetics Laboratory, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance.

About Linkages Biosciences

Linkage Biosciences, Inc. is a venture-backed molecular diagnostics company developing and marketing products that will dramatically improve and expedite complex genetic testing. LinkSeq™, the company's new HLA testing product line, is used in immunogenetic research. The company, headquartered in San Francisco, California, has assembled an outstanding management and scientific team. To learn more please visit www.linkagebio.com.

Note: The product name LinkSeq™ contains an 'e' with a line over it. This character is not compatible with the news wire services.

For Research Use Only.

Copyright 2009. Linkage Biosciences Inc. All rights reserved.

Linkage Biosciences™, LinkSeq™, and SureTyper™ are trademarks of Linkage Biosciences Inc. SYBR® Green is a trademark of Life Technologies Corporation.


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