Inside Instrumentation | May 26, 2008 Issue - Vol. 86 Issue 21 | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 86 Issue 21 | p. 44 | Inside Instrumentation
Issue Date: May 26, 2008

Inside Instrumentation

Technology and Business news for the laboratory world
Department: Science & Technology

Genewave Launches Microarray Platform

The French company Genewave has launched HybLive, an automated microarray platform that combines hybridization, washing, melting, and fluorescence imaging into a benchtop instrument. HybLive features an open microarray format that allows real-time measurement of on-slide hybridization and melting of target molecules to thousands of probes simultaneously. The system is suitable for applications such as verification and validation of probe design, environmental sample monitoring, and on-chip DNA and protein interaction studies.

Caliper To Shut A West Coast Site

Caliper Life Sciences, which specializes in microfluidic, lab automation, and liquid-handling technologies, is consolidating its West Coast operations. The Hopkinton, Mass.-based firm will close its Mountain View, Calif., site, eliminating about 13 jobs, and will move about 33 employees involved primarily in R&D to its other site in Alameda, Calif. The company will reduce its overall costs by $3.3 million but first must spend $3.1 million to cover severance pay and facility abandonment charges. The move is also designed to improve the productivity and effectiveness of its R&D efforts.

NanoInk Creates NanoGuardian Unit

NanoInk, a Skokie, Ill.-based spin-off of Northwestern University, has created a division called NanoGuardian to offer anticounterfeiting measures for pharmaceuticals. The new business will provide product encryption services using the company's nanolithography capabilities. The nanoencryption technology creates codes detectable only by using NanoGuardian's tools. Placed on individual drug tablets, capsules, or vials, the codes enable product tracking and authentication.

Uniqsis Expands Reactor Features


Uniqsis, a Shepreth, England-based firm, has increased the capabilities of its FlowSyn continuous-flow reactor. The benchtop unit can now handle reactions at temperatures up to 260 ??C and pressures up to 1,000 psi. According to Uniqsis, chemistries that might have required a catalyst or the use of a microwave reactor are now potential candidates for continuous-flow synthesis. Other improvements to the unit include easier pump priming and better automated reaction control. In January 2007, Asynt and Grant Instruments formed Uniqsis to develop microreaction technology for research and biopharmaceutical customers.

Varian Offers Nano-LC Option For FTMS

Varian will provide the 216-LC, a nanoflow liquid chromatography system, as an option for its 920-MS triple quadrupole Fourier transform mass spectrometer. The combination is intended to improve the sensitivity of proteomics measurements. The nano-LC system's splitless design delivers nanoliter flows without discarding a large fraction of the solvent. The system controls binary gradients with a separate flow sensor for each mobile phase, improving gradient reproducibility and retention time precision. "We have made it easier for life scientists to gather more data from minute amounts of material," says Martin O'Donoghue, Varian's senior vice president of scientific instruments.

Rigaku Debuts Benchtop X-ray Spectrometer

Rigaku has introduced the Supermini, which the company claims is the world's first high-power benchtop wavelength-dispersive X-ray fluorescence system. The instrument rapidly and nondestructively analyzes all elements from fluorine through uranium in solids, liquids, powders, and thin films. The system includes three analyzing crystals, two detectors, a 12-position sample changer, and a choice of vacuum, air, or helium atmosphere. Rigaku is positioning the system in its lineup between its low-cost Primini benchtop system and its high-power Primus mainframe system.

Device Captures 3-D SEM Images


A new device from Micro Photonics, in Allentown, Pa., allows researchers to acquire three-dimensional scanning electron microscope images without the need for sample preparation. The microCT module, which includes an X-ray anode, an X-ray camera, and a sample rotation stage, replaces the standard sample stage on any SEM instrument. The microscope's electron beam is used to produce X-rays that pass through the sample. In a method similar to medical tomography, the software combines the "shadow projections" from a series of X-ray images taken at different angles into a 3-D picture of the sample interior.


Inside Instrumentation is written by Celia H. Arnaud and Ann M. Thayer. Contact them via e-mail to

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