Recently, Illumina informed their customers that their whole-genome arrays for mouse and FFPE-human samples were to be discontinued. This came as a shock to some researchers that had already started studies using them, or had grants approved and would use them in the future.
Considering other technologies when you have one that is working is really difficult. In Science as well as in life in general, if something works, don’t touch it. That said, if the products you are using are discontinued, you really have to start looking for alternatives.
Today, let’s take a look at an alternative to Illumina microarrays… that in fact has some advantages, including lower background and higher robustness, among other benefits.
This alternative is based on the 3D-Gene technology developed by Toray. We have discussed this technology, and its use for miRNA studies, in previous posts, but today we will focus on its use for mRNA studies.
The mRNA Oligo chip from Toray was selected from the well-established oligo DNA set for microarray from Operon Biotechnologies Inc. – AROSTM v 3.0 and v 4.0. The selection was made with a focus on genes with substantial annotation information. Therefore, a researcher can perform an analysis without being misled by ambiguous information.
The main public databases used in the design of the probes include Ensembl human database, NCBI human RefSeq and H-Invitational Database.
Arrays are available for human (25k), mouse (24k) and rat (20k). Access to this technology is easy, as it is also provided as a service by tebu-bio’s laboratorios located near Paris. You only have to tell them when to collect your samples, and they’ll take care of the whole process!
If you’re interested in learning more about these arrays, as well as a comparison with other microarrays in the market, leave your questions below!