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Researchers to Report New Results Generated on Ion Torrent PGM Sequencer at AGBT

Rapid Pace of Development of Ion Technology Spurs Developer Community

MARCO ISLAND, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Life Technologies Corporation (NASDAQ:LIFE), today announced that just six weeks following the launch of the Ion Torrent PGM sequencer, independent researchers will present data they generated with the system at the annual Advances in Genome Biology and Technology (AGBT) conference. The presentations demonstrate both the simplicity and speed of the Ion Torrent system—to data from delivery in six weeks --as well as how rapidly a user community is forming around the technology.

The vendor community is also embracing Ion semiconductor sequencing technology because the system's simplicity and affordability is opening the sequencing market to tens of thousands of researchers and clinicians. Companies including Diagenode, CLC bio, Partek Inc., DNASTAR® and BioTeam are partnering with Ion Torrent to provide innovative upstream and downstream solutions accessible to all researchers.

"When you democratize something, you can build a community, and that's what we're rapidly seeing develop around Ion Torrent, on both the user and the vendor side," said Dr. Jonathan M. Rothberg, founder of Ion Torrent. "Ion Torrent's speed, simplicity and scalability are enabling fast results and rapid application development as both of these communities see the advantages of semiconductor based sequencing."

Ion semiconductor sequencing, which is at the heart of the Ion Personal Genome Machine (PGM™) sequencer has already demonstrated a consistent 10x improvement in throughput every six months during the system's development, and continued increases along that trajectory promise to radically transform DNA sequencing for all scientists.

Data generated on the Ion Torrent PGM sequencer and presented at AGBT will focus on the sequencing of amplicons, microbial genomes and barcoded samples. The researchers presenting at AGBT on Friday, Feb. 4 are:

  • Dr. Long Le, research collaborator of Dr. John Iafrate, Director of the Diagnostic Molecular Pathology Laboratory, early Ion Torrent adopters from Massachusetts General Hospital
  • Dr. Chad Nusbaum from the Broad Institute
  • Dr. Stephan Schuster from Pennsylvania State University
  • Donna Muzny from Baylor College of Medicine
  • Dr. Joe Boland from SAIC-Frederick

Applications developed by the Ion Torrent community are focusing both on solutions that lie upstream and downstream of DNA sequencing.

Upstream Solutions from the Ion Torrent Community: Amplicon and Genome Sequencing

"The potential speed and simplicity of the system we hope will allow us to analyze multiple samples in an efficient manner," said Dr. Iafrate. "These features would be essential for incorporating high-throughput sequencing technologies into clinical applications."

Dr. Joe Boland, with SAIC-Frederick Inc., is using the Ion PGM system in conjunction with the Fluidigm Access Array™ System to perform multiplex amplicon sequencing. He used this combination to rapidly and economically sequence multiple amplicons -- up to 48 different bar-coded samples in a single Ion Torrent PGM run -- with minimal hands-on time.

For researchers interested in sequencing whole genomes, Life Technologies has partnered with Diagenode who has a long history of providing world-class DNA fragmentation tools. Diagenode's Bioruptor®, which uses a unique system to uniformly process multiple samples, has been extensively validated to quickly generate unbiased genomic fragments suitable in the creation of DNA libraries for the Ion PGM at an entry cost accessible to any laboratory.

Downstream Solutions from the Ion Torrent Community: Data analysis and Management

Ion Torrent is also partnering with CLC bio, Partek and DNASTAR, three companies that have a long history of delivering world-class bioinformatics solutions and services.

"I generate and analyze my own data and by using bioinformatics tools from companies like DNASTAR and Partek, I'm able to significantly decrease my time to results and focus on the next experiment rather than struggling through data analysis," said Dr. Long Le, Clinical Pathology Resident and Molecular Fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital.

Data management can also be a significant hurdle for many scientists, so Life Technologies has partnered with BioTeam, a consulting firm dedicated to helping researchers choose the best platform for their IT, storage and data management needs.

In addition to partnering with leading vendors, Life Technologies has also created the Ion Community,, a Web-based forum for the scientific community to develop robust solutions that leverage the full potential of Ion semiconductor sequencing. Resources include sample data, protocols, source code, data formats and discussion forums. The Ion PGM sequencer is also the first subject of the Life Grand Challenges $7 million crowd sourcing initiative.

About the Life Grand Challenges Contest

The Life Grand Challenges Contest is a first-of-its-kind crowd sourcing initiative focused on the life sciences tools and technology industry. The goal of the $7 million competition is to unlock even bigger opportunities the company is witnessing, while accelerating innovation within the life sciences community.

There will be seven individual challenges, each with a $1 million prize. The first three challenges are focused on Ion semiconductor sequencing. The fourth challenge is focused on SOLiD sequencing. The remaining three challenges will be related to Life Technologies products and will be announced later in 2011.

The three Ion challenges are to 1) produce twice as much sequence data, 2) do it twice as fast, and 3) do it with twice the accuracy. The SOLiD challenge is to sequence both the genome and the RNA content of a single cancer cell, effectively doubling the biological readout that is currently achievable by sequencing a single cell.

To receive the most up-to-date information on the various challenges, please register at, and please join the conversation on Twitter: @Grand_Challenge.

About Life Technologies Next-Generation Sequencing

Life Technologies is the world's leading provider of sequencing technologies, offering the industry's gold standard capillary electrophoresis technology with the 3500 CE and 3500Dx Series Genetic Analyzers, next-generation sequencing technology with the SOLiD System, and the Ion Torrent semiconductor based sequencing technology with the recently launched Ion Torrent PGM.

The 5500 Series SOLiD and Ion Torrent Sequencers are for research use only, and are not intended for animal or human therapeutic or diagnostic use.

About Life Technologies (

Life Technologies Corporation (NASDAQ:LIFE) is a global biotechnology company dedicated to improving the human condition. Our systems, consumables and services enable researchers to accelerate scientific and medical advancements that make life even better. Life Technologies customers do their work across the biological spectrum, working to advance the fields of discovery and translational research, molecular medicine, stem cell-based therapies, food safety and animal health, and 21st century forensics. The company manufactures both molecular diagnostic and research use only products. Life Technologies' industry-leading brands are found in nearly every life sciences lab in the world and include innovative instrument systems under the Applied Biosystems and Ion Torrent names, as well as, the broadest range of reagents with its Invitrogen, GIBCO, Ambion, Molecular Probes and Taqman products. Life Technologies had sales of $3.3 billion in 2009, employs approximately 11,000 people, has a presence in approximately 160 countries, and possesses one of the largest intellectual property estates in the life sciences industry, with approximately 3,900 patents and exclusive licenses. For more information on how we are making a difference, please visit our website:

Research Use Only

The Ion PGM Sequencer is for research use only, and not intended for animal or human therapeutic or diagnostic use.

Life Technologies' Safe Harbor Statement

This press release includes forward-looking statements about Life Technologies' anticipated results that involve risks and uncertainties. Some of the information contained in this press release, including, but not limited to, statements as to industry trends and Life Technologies' plans, objectives, expectations and strategy for its business, contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Any statements that are not statements of historical fact are forward-looking statements. When used, the words "believe," "plan," "intend," "anticipate," "target," "estimate," "expect" and the like, and/or future tense or conditional constructions ("will," "may," "could," "should," etc.), or similar expressions, identify certain of these forward-looking statements. Important factors which could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements are detailed in filings made by Life Technologies with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Life Technologies undertakes no obligation to update or revise any such forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.

Life Technologies
Wes Conard, 650-243-6019

Source: Life Technologies Corporation

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