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Science  29 Jul 2016:
Vol. 353, Issue 6298, pp. 509
DOI: 10.1126/science.353.6298.509

Raman-SEM Imaging

The WITec Raman Imaging and Scanning Electron (RISE) microscopy mode for correlative Raman-scanning electron microscopy (SEM) imaging is now compatible with the SEM Zeiss MERLIN. Raman microscopy, a label-free, nondestructive technology for the identification and imaging of the molecular composition of a sample, is the perfect complement to SEM, which visualizes the surface structure of a sample, and the often-associated energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy that can only identify elemental constituents. The integration of both techniques into one system greatly accelerates the experimental workflow. It places both the objective and sample stage required for Raman microscopy within the SEM's vacuum chamber. The sample is simply transferred between the Raman and SEM measuring positions by a software-driven, push-button mechanism using an extremely precise scan stage. Customers benefit from high-quality, sophisticated system components for state-of-the-art research in such fields as nanotechnology, life sciences, geosciences, pharmaceutics, and materials research.

Visible-Range Spectrophotometer

A new, rugged, accurate visible-range spectrophotometer is designed for lab managers and instructors looking for ease of operation and superior photometric performance in a single instrument. The GENESYS 30 visible-range spectrophotometer features a 5-in. color display and a rubber push-button keypad. It has a large sample compartment with a removable, washable liner to protect against spills. The larger sample compartment improves accessibility and flexibility, enabling labs to use a variety of standard cuvette holders and test tubes. Designed to provide fast, accurate results every time, the instrument offers rapid scanning capabilities and photometric performance usually reserved for higher-priced models. A front-facing USB port and optional snap-on thermal printer allow rapid data export for further analysis. The user interface is intuitive and guides new users through standard protocols, sample analysis, and results interpretation, minimizing the need for training.

Vis-NIR Spectroscopy Software

Vision Air spectroscopy software is now available for visible and near-infrared (Vis-NIR) spectroscopy instruments. Designed for routine analysis measurements, this new software includes an intuitive, self-guided user interface for fast measurement and straightforward data interpretation. Its operation focuses on sample analysis parameters and trends, not spectra, increasing the information density from NIR measurements. The software saves time and guarantees reliable measurements across multiple facilities and multiple operators, by ensuring that configurations and methods are updated simultaneously. Single instrument configurations also benefit from networking functionalities, including data integrity and support. Vision Air software allows the user to develop the analysis model or use a model developed by and stored on a Metrohm server. Chemometrics expertise is no longer needed to use NIR. Customers can choose the level of support they need and deploy models using one instrument locally or hundreds of instruments globally.

Comet Assay Platform

The CometChip high-throughput GenTox platform allows a 5,000% increase in throughput over the original comet assay procedure. The comet assay is a highly sensitive, direct approach for the measurement of DNA damage and repair. However, adoption and routine use of the assay in the safety screening for drugs, cosmetics, chemicals, pesticides, fungicides, and other compounds affecting health and the environment have been hampered by technical issues including reproducibility, accuracy, and the inordinate time required for high-volume testing. If an average of 208 arrayed comets is imaged per well, the 96-well CometChip produces on average 20,000 comets per chip. With a capacity for three CometChips per electrophoresis system run, the output for just two runs per day is 120,000 comets. The Comet Analysis Software can analyze in minutes what used to take days. In this example, 120,000 comets can be analyzed, the data exported, and a report generated in under 20 minutes.

HDx RNA Fusion Reference Standards

HDx FFPE RNA Fusion Reference Standards are available for independent analytical controls for the optimization and validation of targeted RNA sequencing, endpoint reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR), or RT quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) assays that detect gene fusions. Each section contains an FFPE cell line multiplex-verified to contain EML4-ALK (Variant 1), CCDC6-RET, and SLC34A2-ROS1 fusions. ALK fusions of the genetic markers ALK, RET, and ROS1 are found in approximately 3%–7% of lung tumors and are an important clinical marker for non-small cell lung cancer. The anticancer drug crizotinib is approved to treat certain late-stage, non-small cell lung cancers that express the abnormal anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) gene. Accurate and reliable molecular diagnostic testing is needed prior to beginning therapy. These FFPE RNA reference standards allow end users to optimize and validate targeted RNA fusion panels. The cell lines employed in creating these standards provide a renewable source of reference material that is reproducible and consistent.

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  • Newly offered instrumentation, apparatus, and laboratory materials of interest to researchers in all disciplines in academic, industrial, and governmental organizations are featured in this space. Emphasis is given to purpose, chief characteristics, and availabilty of products and materials. Endorsement by Science or AAAS of any products or materials mentioned is not implied. Additional information may be obtained from the manufacturer or supplier.

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