Vela Diagnostics signs license agreement with UCSF

Vela Diagnostics signs a license agreement with the The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) 

Singapore (January 17, 2018) – Vela Diagnostics signs a license agreement with the The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) for two technologies, known as:  FLASH (Finding Low Abundance Sequences by Hybridization); and DASH (Depletion of Abundant Sequences of Hybridization) - innovative technologies for enriching rare sequences in nucleic acid libraries. 

This agreement provides the framework for Vela Diagnostics to use and practice the FLASH and DASH technologies in order to make new products and provide products and services involving the licensed method in the US and other mutually agreed upon countries. Vela Diagnostics plans to use these novel methods in Oncology and Infectious Diseases Testing Development, including cell free DNA/RNA and microbiology/microbiome testing approaches.  

UCSF is a leading university dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care.  

The FLASH technology developed by the laboratory of Joseph DeRisi, professor of biochemistry and biophysics at UCSF and co-president of the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub, overcomes limitations over current methods for enriching low-abundance sequences in complex sequencing libraries, such as ether multiplex PCR or hybridisation to labeled oligonucleotides which are lacking efficiency and are expensive and difficult to optimise. This invention not only overcomes those limitations, but also provides additional advantages, such as: ability to target large numbers of sequences simultaneously;applicability to sample of any origin; compatibility with use in NGS. Using this method to target antibiotic resistance genes, UCSF researchers have demonstrated enrichment of low-abundance genes by over ten-fold compared to randomly fragmented cDNA libraries derived from patient samples.

The DeRisi lab's DASH technology is a facile technique for targeted depletion of undesired sequences. This simple single-tube method is reprogrammable for virtually any sample type to increase sequencing yield with minimal cost.

“We are excited to have signed an agreement with UCSF and now have access to DASH and FLASH technologies, which will be game changing for the industry and any future development of molecular testing solutions. It is a great opportunity for us and we are now in a position to power our further developments of the oncology and virology portfolios by these innovative methods," said Vela Diagnostics CEO Michael Tillmann.

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