To Dream the Not-So-Impossible Genomics Dream

Photo: Courtesy of SolexaSolexa's single-molecule detection apparatus Nick McCooke, CEO of Solexa, has a bold goal: to analyze, in one day, the whole genome of an individual for one thousand dollars. The Cambridge, UK-based company (www.solexa.com) is developing TotalGenotyping™, a method based on the Single Molecule Array™ technology invented by Solexa founders and Cambridge University academics Shankar Balasubramanian, David Klenerman, and their team. The process will combine ul

Aileen Constans
Oct 13, 2002
Photo: Courtesy of Solexa
Solexa's single-molecule detection apparatus

Nick McCooke, CEO of Solexa, has a bold goal: to analyze, in one day, the whole genome of an individual for one thousand dollars. The Cambridge, UK-based company (www.solexa.com) is developing TotalGenotyping, a method based on the Single Molecule Array technology invented by Solexa founders and Cambridge University academics Shankar Balasubramanian, David Klenerman, and their team. The process will combine ultrahigh-density arrays (up to 108 sites per cm2) with amplification-free sequencing, allowing hundreds of thousands of DNA fragments to be sequenced rapidly and simultaneously.

Solexa's technology employs the sequencing-by-synthesis method. The genomic DNA sample is processed into millions of short, single-stranded oligonucleotide fragments, which are attached to primers and anchored at random sites on the surface of an array. Fluorescently labeled nucleotides bind to complementary bases on the oligonucleotide templates;...

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