Whatman targets clone market with revolutionary new product

FLORHAM PARK, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–April 12, 2005–EasyClone 384 replaces traditional freezer storange methods and offers first of its kind, single device for entire sample archiving and purification workflow, enabling faster DNA mining and discovery.

Whatman, a leader in separations technology, today announced the launch of the EasyClone 384 plate. The EasyClone 384 plate is a single, versatile device to replace the existing complex and costly workflows currently used by genomics institutes and laboratories. Whatman brings its technical expertise in DNA archiving and processing to the clone market to enable quicker results of DNA mining and research. The EasyClone 384 plate can be used by biotechnology, pharmaceutical, government and academic research laboratories for the archiving, shipping and purifying of clones – all at room temperature.

The EasyClone 384 is the result of the previously announced partnership with GenVault, a San Diego-based company that is the leader in biosample management. Customers can now use GenVault’s integrated biosample management systems to manage the EasyClone 384 plates. GenVault’s systems allow them to be fully utilized by providing compact stacking and storage of hundreds to thousands of plates as well as easy access to individual samples through robotic automation and complimentary software.

“This is a unique technology for the clone market and will modernize the way laboratories collect, store and back-up clone samples,” said David Wellis, senior vice president, marketing and sales, GenVault.

While Whatman has traditionally targeted the forensics market, specifically the archiving and storage of DNA acquired via blood samples, the launch of EasyClone 384 marks the company’s entrance into the pure DNA research marketplace. After extensive testing, experience and success in forensics and relationships with medical and pharmaceutical research institutions, Whatman realized a great opportunity and need in the industry for an easier clone archiving process. The EasyClone 384 plate meets this need without disrupting the current laboratory systems already in place. Rather, it is one product replacing numerous time-consuming steps.

EasyClone 384 provides a simple way of storing clone samples and eliminates the need for current storage back-up methods and facilities which consist of bulky freezers that ultimately rely on power supplies. For the first time, a clone sample can now be stored in half-height plates at room temperature using the same technology that has preserved genomic DNA for 14 years and counting. Relying on proven Whatman FTA technology, which allows for the collection, storage and purification of DNA from a variety of biological samples, EasyClone consists of a 384-well storage and extraction plate with a piercable foil bottom and FTA disks pre-cut into each well. The design and format of the EasyClone 384 plate enables the genomics market to use FTA as a replacement for both ultra-low archiving and purification kits. By eliminating the need for freezers and clone processing steps, EasyClone 384 saves scientists time and money.

“With the launch of EasyClone 384, we are introducing an innovative, unique and truly revolutionary method of clone archiving and purification,” said Rob McPheeters, technical marketing manager of Bioscience, Whatman. “We are excited to deliver a solution to the genomics market which optimizes and streamlines the processes already present in research laboratories.”

In addition to research laboratories, Whatman will also target those companies supplying and selling clones into the genomics market. In the past, the process of fulfilling a clone order was laborious and could take several days. Now with the EasyClone 384 plate, companies can immediately create identical samples of clones for easy access and delivery. Moreover, it will allow for same-day fulfillment of clone orders, a previously impossible task for such companies. The EasyClone plate is now available from Whatman Inc. and has been priced to allow clone archiving and purification for 10 cents per sample.


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