Novel technology developed by QIAGEN halves time required for real-time PCR
Jan 23 2007

Novel technology developed by QIAGEN halves time required for real-time PCR

QuantiFast enables new advances in research and diagnostics

Venlo, The Netherlands, January 23, 2007 --- QIAGEN, the worldwide leading provider of sample and assay technologies for life sciences, applied testing and molecular diagnostics, today announced the launch of its new QuantiFast product line. These products leverage a novel, proprietary technology which allow significantly reduced processing times of real-time PCR and are suited for use on all real-time instruments.

The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a one of the most widely used and important technologies in modern molecular biology, which allows the detection of genetic targets in samples. Real-time PCR expands the information available in PCR assays by providing online, real-time quantification of the target genetic material.

QuantiFast technology is based on Fast Cycling PCR, a technology breakthrough that QIAGEN announced in October 2006. QIAGEN is now introducing this proprietary technology to real time PCR through the launch of the QuantiFast product line. QuantiFast kits allow customers to reduce the duration to 40-60 minutes. Users can save more than 50% of the time previously needed, without compromising the market-leading sensitivity and reproducibility for which QIAGEN's assay technologies are recognized.

The significant increase in speed is achieved through innovative new PCR assay technology additives, which substantially reduce the cycling time. The kits are compatible with all commercially available real-time PCR instruments, known as thermocyclers, and with existing PCR assays. They can be used with these without requiring complex adaptations (such as new primer design or optimization of PCR protocols). The QuantiFast Kits enable higher sample throughput using existing laboratory apparatus or established real-time PCR systems. This avoids the need for expensive purchases of faster PCR instruments.

"The unique QuantiFast Kits broaden QIAGEN's already leading portfolio of assay technologies for research, applied testing and molecular diagnostics and are further evidence of QIAGEN's technology leadership", says Dr. Janina Lehmann, Global Business Director Gene Expression at QIAGEN. "The innovative QuantiFast Kits enable users to more than double their throughput without compromising quality, cost and assay design. These advantages allow our customers fast and immediate access to a new dimension of possibilities in real-time PCR."

The QuantiFast Kits can be used for screenings in applied testing, to speed up drug development in the pharmaceutical industry, and also to deliver reliable diagnostic results more rapidly in acute epidemics as a component of a self validated test system. QuantiFast Kits and the QIAGEN Fast Cycling PCR Kit are intended for research purposes only. The products are not intended to provide information for diagnosis, prevention, or treatment of disease.

About PCR

The polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, is today considered one of the most widely used technologies in molecular biology. Invented by Kary Mullis in 1983, he received a Nobel Prize for his discoveries in 1993. Today, PCR is the most frequently used technique in many areas of basic and applied research in molecular biology, biochemistry, and medicine, and is used in many applications, including detection and quantification of DNA and RNA targets in research, applied testing and molecular diagnostics.

PCR is a method for amplification of specific nucleic acid sequences from a complex mixture of nucleic acids. The DNA in a sample is separated into single strands through heating, and each strand acts as a template for enzymatic extension of the missing complementary strand. The beginning and end of the amplified segment are defined through the addition of short, highly specific DNA molecules, known as primers. This replication cycle is repeated many times, leading to exponential amplification of individual segments of DNA.

In real-time PCR, a specific sequence of DNA is amplified and quantified. The amplified sequence binds to a fluorescence which is measured. This allows calculation of the original amount of the sequence. Real-time PCR takes place in a real-time thermal cycler, which provides the appropriate temperatures for the different steps of each amplification cycle and also measures fluorescence.

About QIAGEN

QIAGEN N.V., a Netherlands holding company, is the leading provider of innovative sample and assay technologies and products. The products are considered standards in areas such as pre-analytical sample preparation and molecular diagnostics solutions. QIAGEN has developed a comprehensive portfolio of more than 500 proprietary, consumable products and automated solutions for sample collection, nucleic acid and protein handling, separation, and purification and open and target specific assays. The company's products are sold to academic research markets, to leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, to applied testing customers (such as in forensics, veterinary, biodefense and industrial applications) as well as to molecular diagnostics laboratories.

QIAGEN employs more than 1,900 people worldwide. QIAGEN products are sold through a dedicated sales force and a global network of distributors in more than 40 countries. Further information about QIAGEN can be found at www.qiagen.com.

Contact

Dr. Thomas Theuringer
Manager Public Relations
QIAGEN GmbH
Tel: + 49 (0) 2103-29-11826
Email: Thomas.Theuringer@qiagen.com

Dr. Janina Lehmann
Global Business Director Gene Expression
QIAGEN GmbH
+ 49 (0) 2103-29-16410
email: Janina.Lehmann@qiagen.com

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