|[December 14, 2012]
Genome Institute of Singapore and Fluidigm Establish Asia's First Single-Cell Genomics Research Center
SINGAPORE & SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. --(Business Wire)--
The Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS), an institute under the umbrella
of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR (News - Alert)), and
Fluidigm Corporation (NASDAQ:FLDM) today announced the establishment of
the first research center in Asia exclusively dedicated to accelerating
the understanding of how individual cells work, and how diagnosis and
treatment might be enhanced through insight derived from single cells.
The GIS-Fluidigm Single-Cell 'Omics Center (SCOC) is expected to act as
a focal point for collaborative efforts among single-cell genomics
researchers across the region.
The SCOC will be a visionary academic-industry partnership designed to
provide integrated analytics for single-cell genomic applications to the
region's researchers. This interdisciplinary center will bring together
molecular and cell biologists and provide them with genomics and
genotypic data for their assessment of biological pathways, disease
mechanisms and the characterization of healthy and diseased tissues.
The center will provide single-cell analytics across a diverse
collection of stakeholders such as drug discovery firms, pharmaceutical
and biotech companies, academia and clinics. The SCOC is targeted to
provide single-cell infrastructure across Singapore and Asia that will
engage various disciplines in an adaptive multi-source platform.
An example of one of the early projects that the SCOC will tackle is
defining early embryonic cellular state spaces using single-cell
transcriptomics through mRNA sequencing. This project will be led by GIS
Senior Group Leader Dr. Paul Robson. The measurement of the
transcriptome at the single-cell level is the most accessible method to
define cell states with digital gene expression patterns providing the
state space coordinates. This project aims to define a minimal set of
signaling and regulatory genes capable of defining the attractor and
transitional cellular states spaces in existence early in human
The SCOC will be housed in dedicated laboratory space at GIS facilities
in Biopolis, Singapore. It will feature the full capabilities of
Fluidigm's new C1™ Single-Cell Auto Prep System and the
Fluidigm BioMark™ HD System for gene expression analytics and
validation. In addition, the center will have access to various NGS
capabilities for sequencing.
GIS is one of the world's premier centers for human genetics studies,
genomic discovery, and the pursuit of integrating technology, genetics
and biology towards the goal of individualized medicine. Drs. Paul
Robson and Bing Lim, GIS Senior Group Leader and Associate Director,
Cancer Stem Cell Biology, will oversee the initial projects run through
GIS Executive Director Prof Ng Huck Hui said, "GIS has identified
Single-Cell Genomics as one of our new research frontiers. We are set up
to build a repertoire of new research capabilities for single-cell
analyses. Our initial collaboration with Fluidigm has borne fruit with
the publication of a landmark paper by Dr. Paul Robson. This larger and
very important collaboration will see an even greater synergy between
the technologies from GIS and Fluidigm."
"With the creation of the SCOC, we assemble a strong multidisciplinary
consortium of academia and industry, and an interdisciplinary teamof
senior scientists, engineers and informatics specialists with very deep
knowledge and skills in analyzing cellomics and genomics information.
This will create a platform for information-sharing in a collaborative
manner designed to deliver fast execution from concept to results," said
Dr. Michael Rossbach, Head of the GIS Office of Business Development.
"The Single-Cell 'Omics Center is a major boost to the emerging,
burgeoning field of single-cell analysis and we are thrilled to be part
of it together with GIS," said Gajus Worthington, President and Chief
Executive Officer of Fluidigm. "GIS has a track record of publishing
breakthroughs based upon single-cell research, so this center can act as
an accelerant for more new science. In addition, we expect the SCOC will
stimulate more single-cell genomics research throughout Asia,"
The SCOC's most relevant applications are associated with life science
research, bioprocesses, diagnostic and therapeutic clinical
developments. The focus of the SCOC will be on single-cell analytics for
biologics research and development, biomarker discovery, drug targeting,
molecular diagnostics, pathway modeling, cellular and toxicity studies,
pharmaceutical research and development, agricultural research and
development, industrial biotechnology, and academic, clinical and basic
Researchers have long known that heterogeneity exists among cells in
tissue samples and other populations, but this variability is masked by
averaging data across pooled cell samples. Fluidigm's microfluidic chips
and high-throughput instruments have made single-cell studies feasible
by converting cellular heterogeneity from a source of background noise
to a source of information enabling cutting-edge discoveries.
There has been an upsurge in single-cell research and Fluidigm
technology is in a leadership position in supplying tools to single-cell
Fluidigm equipment is currently being installed at the Center and first
projects are underway.
About the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is Singapore's
lead public sector agency that fosters world-class scientific research
and talent to drive economic growth and transform Singapore into a
vibrant knowledge-based and innovation driven economy. In line with its
mission-oriented mandate, A*STAR spearheads research and development in
fields that are essential to growing Singapore's manufacturing sector
and catalysing new growth industries. A*STAR supports these economic
clusters by providing intellectual, human and industrial capital to its
partners in industry. A*STAR oversees 20 biomedical sciences and
physical sciences and engineering research entities, located in Biopolis
and Fusionopolis as well as their vicinity. These two R&D hubs house a
bustling and diverse community of local and international research
scientists and engineers from A*STAR's research entities as well as a
growing number of corporate laboratories. Please visit www.a-star.edu.sg.
About the Genome Institute of Singapore
The Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS) is an institute of the Agency
for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). It has a global vision
that seeks to use genomic sciences to improve public health and public
prosperity. Established in 2001 as a centre for genomic discovery, the
GIS will pursue the integration of technology, genetics and biology
towards the goal of individualized medicine. The key research areas at
the GIS include computational & systems biology, stem cell and
developmental biology, cancer stem cell biology, cancer therapeutics and
stratified oncology, human genetics, infectious diseases, genomic
technologies and translational technologies. The genomics infrastructure
at the GIS is utilized to train new scientific talent, to function as a
bridge for academic and industrial research, and to explore scientific
questions of high impact. Please visit www.gis.a-star.edu.sg.
Use of Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the
meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995
including statements relating to the field of single-cell genomics
research and potential developments in the emerging market.
Forward-looking statements are subject to numerous risks and
uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from
currently anticipated results, including risks relating to research and
development activities and the development of emerging markets.
Information on these and additional risks affecting Fluidigm's business
and operating results are contained in its filings with the Securities
and Exchange Commission, including its most recently filed Quarterly
Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2012. These
forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof and Fluidigm
disclaims any obligation to update these statements.
Fluidigm (NASDAQ:FLDM) develops, manufactures and markets microfluidic
systems for growth markets in the life science and agricultural
biotechnology, or Ag-Bio, industries. Fluidigm's proprietary
microfluidic systems consist of instruments and consumables, including
chips, assays and other reagents. These systems are designed to
significantly simplify experimental workflow, increase throughput and
reduce costs, while providing the excellent data quality demanded by
customers. Fluidigm actively markets three microfluidic systems,
including eight different commercial chips, to leading academic
institutions, diagnostic laboratories, and pharmaceutical, biotechnology
and Ag-Bio companies.
For more information, please visit www.fluidigm.com.
Fluidigm, the Fluidigm logo, C1 and BioMark, are trademarks
or registered trademarks of Fluidigm Corporation.
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