ROCHESTER, N.Y., Feb. 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Thermal Gradient, a Rochester, NY biotech company, announces a breakthrough in its fast PCR technology for molecular diagnostics. PCR (polymerase chain reaction) is the preferred critical step in virtually all forms of DNA testing.
The company's latest generation of amplification devices has successfully developed and demonstrated the performance of PCR at speeds many times faster than conventional methods, achieving 8.5 decades of amplification (greater than 300 million times) in just eight minutes. For the first time, these simple devices are being made from low cost materials suitable for high volume manufacturing processes. The company believes that it now has the best platform for molecular testing that addresses ease of use, fast performance, and low cost operation.
The current generation of devices, developed under an NIH grant(1), are aimed at rapid point-of-care HIV testing in low resource settings. As such, they need to be easy to use, appropriate for field deployment, work very fast, and be produced in very large quantities at very low unit cost. By demonstrating that high performance can be achieved in devices fabricated with materials suitable for mass production processes the company has taken a major step toward those goals. With this early success, the company has committed to its first mass producible injection molded design. Testing of these units is expected early in January of 2011.
These amplification devices are used in a cartridge that is already in development. This cartridge will be a single use, disposable unit that integrates sample preparation from whole blood, PCR amplification, and real-time detection. The instrument that will process these cartridges is also under development.
(1) Award Number R44AI089389 from the National Institute Of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institute of Allergy And Infectious Diseases or the National Institutes of Health.
SOURCE Thermal Gradient Inc.