Microarrays Beyond Reach

Using the subheading "Microarray tools open genomes to discoverers" in the Jan. 22 Hot Papers article1 is much like telling a group of kindergartners: "Any of you can become the president of the United States." The fact is most of them will never be the president no matter how hard they try. Microarrays are excellent tools, but their exorbitant price makes them beyond the reach of most researchers. The few papers that have been published so far using the "chips" came from either rich labs or lab

Sailen Barik
Feb 4, 2001

Using the subheading "Microarray tools open genomes to discoverers" in the Jan. 22 Hot Papers article1 is much like telling a group of kindergartners: "Any of you can become the president of the United States." The fact is most of them will never be the president no matter how hard they try. Microarrays are excellent tools, but their exorbitant price makes them beyond the reach of most researchers. The few papers that have been published so far using the "chips" came from either rich labs or labs that have industrial/proprietary connections.

I don't think the microarray hot papers of today will remain hot for long. They were neither conceptually novel nor hard to do; they simply represent "proof of concept" or application of a great but easy technology. They are much like papers that used PCR when PCR was new. But at least PCR was inexpensive and, thus, the...

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