FREMONT, Calif.- WaferGen Biosystems, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: WGBS), a leading developer of state-of-the-art genomic analysis systems, today announced that the University of Southern California (USC) has purchased the WaferGen SmartChip system for its USC Center for Molecular Pathways and Drug Discovery to discover and validate biomarkers for pancreatic and colorectal cancer applications to expedite the development of a cancer therapy. USC purchased a solution that includes the SmartChip platform and validated gene panels for biomarker profiling.
"Our work is to identify genes and pathways that are associated with cancer," said Michael Kahn, Ph.D., professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, Provost's professor of medicine and pharmacy and co-leader of the USC GI-Oncology program. "We are also attempting to validate molecular signatures based on a large number of patient samples rapidly and cost effectively to enable more targeted clinical trials. We will use the SmartChip system to help us accomplish our goal."
"The goal of our Center is to combine basic science and clinical science to develop new drug therapies and rapidly translate them into the clinic. We will use the SmartChip system to speed our programs to pick drug pathways -- the most effective drug targets -- changing the cancer treatment paradigm and resulting in therapies that will advance the treatment of cancer," said Heinz-Josef Lenz, M.D., F.A.C.P., professor of medicine and preventive medicine, associate director of clinical research at USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Kathryn Balakrishnan Chair for Cancer Research and co-leader of the USC GI-Oncology program.
Alnoor Shivji, chairman and CEO, WaferGen commented, "The unique pathways-approach developed by the USC Center for Molecular Pathways and Drug Discovery has the potential to make a dramatic difference in how cancer is treated. We are very excited to be part of this approach and believe that the SmartChip system, with its PCR sensitivity combined with its speed and cost advantages, will help enable researchers to focus on the most likely drug candidates and patient populations by providing efficient and effective biomarker measurement to guide them."
USC Center for Molecular Pathways and Drug Discovery
The USC Center for Molecular Pathways and Drug Discovery was created at the Keck School of Medicine of USC to treat cancer and other diseases by discovering and modulating cellular communication pathways. The center was created by Michael Kahn, Ph.D., and Heinz-Josef Lenz, M.D., F.A.C.P., and was designed in collaboration with the Keck School, the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Eli and Edythe Broad CIRM Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at USC.
About WaferGen and the SmartChip Real-Time PCR System
WaferGen Biosystems, Inc. is a leader in the development, manufacture and sale of state-of-the-art systems for genomic analysis for the life science and pharmaceutical industries. The company currently offers the breakthrough SmartChip Real-Time PCR system, the next-generation Real-Time PCR system for discovery and validation of biomarkers, or gene expression patterns, on a single platform. The company believes that the SmartChip system is ideal for researchers seeking to confirm discoveries made with the growing use of next-generation sequencing. In addition, the high throughput capabilities of the SmartChip system enable scientists to extend their research across large panels of genes, and hundreds of samples, at a very reasonable cost.
Combined with next-generation chemistry and optimized assays being developed by WaferGen under the guidance of David Gelfand, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer and one of the pioneers of PCR, the SmartChip system is designed to provide accurate, highly sensitive and high-throughput gene expression profiling capabilities to researchers, clinicians and pharmaceutical companies.
In addition, the company offers an innovative fee-based service for gene-expression profiling using the SmartChip system. For additional information, please see www.wafergen.com.
SOURCE WaferGen Biosystems, Inc.
Don Huffman, CFO,
both of WaferGen,
Web Site: www.wafergen.com