Transgenomic's SURVEYOR Scan K-RAS mutation detection kit launched

Transgenomic, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: TBIO) announced today the launch of its SURVEYOR Scan K-RAS kit, the first in a family of mutation detection kits the company plans to offer featuring its proprietary SURVEYOR Nuclease and WAVE® HS DHPLC platform. SURVEYOR Scan technology is a novel approach to mutation detection that uses a PCR amplification reaction and hybridization to form heteroduplex DNA molecules in samples with K-RAS mutation. A digestion step is performed using SURVEYOR Nuclease, which cuts the DNA strands at mismatched base pairs. The different sized pieces of DNA are recognized as additional peaks on a chromatogram when compared to non-mutant DNA. K-RAS mutations are associated with lack of response to therapies directed against the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in colorectal cancer.

"For several years SURVEYOR technology has been recognized as having superior detection capability over standard sequencing, and so we have developed it into a user-friendly kit for K-RAS," said Transgenomic's Chief Scientific Officer, Dr. Eric Kaldjian. "In addition to detecting the most common activating mutations, it also detects other mutations that current sequence-specific methods will not find. This technology will have very practical extensions to tumor suppressor genes, such as p53, in which mutations of clinical significance may be present throughout a gene."

In a lung cancer study presented by OSI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. at the annual meeting of the 2009 American Association for Cancer Research, SURVEYOR Scan K-RAS was compared with standard sequencing and Scorpions ARMS, an allele-specific test. The study demonstrated that the SURVEYOR method was more sensitive then sequencing and a better predictor of response to single-agent anti-EGFR therapy than Scorpions ARMS.

"We are very pleased to announce the launch of our SURVEYOR Scan K-RAS kit," said Craig Tuttle, Transgenomic's Chief Executive Officer. "We have long believed that SURVEYOR Nuclease based applications will be a powerful method to detect somatic mutations in gene pathways that are becoming increasingly important in selecting appropriate treatments for cancer patients. By combining SURVEYOR Nuclease with the WAVE HS platform we have created an accurate, easy to use, simple to interpret and cost effective way to find somatic mutations in genes such as K-RAS. SURVEYOR Scan K-RAS will be the first of several mutation detection kits we are developing for diagnostic use with WAVE HS. Additionally, we will be able to develop SURVEYOR Scan kits on other instrument platforms; we believe that this will enhance the adoption of our assay."

SOURCE Transgenomic, Inc.

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