Life Technologies announced at Ion World event at San Francisco that it is beginning to ship Ion Proton sequencing system. Life Technologies will ship more than 100 Ion Proton sequencers to customers in September. Life Technologies’ Ion Proton, priced at $150,000, is a rapid genome-scale benchtop sequencer based on semi-conductor technologies that can sequence human genome, exome, or transcriptome in a single day.
Life Technologies introduced Ion Proton in early this year and is designed to sequence a human genome for just $1000.
Ion Torrent’s Ion Proton will be shipped with Ion PI Chip, which can sequence exomes and transcriptomes in just 2-4 hours. Life Technologies said, the system will produce 60-80 million filtered reads and up to 10 Gb throughput. It also holds potential for better performance later. Ion Proton’s read-lengths are of 100 to 200 bp and the accuracy is comparable to that of the Ion PGM sequencer. Ion Proton’s PI chip has 165 million semiconductor wells and it can sequence 2 human exomes.
With Ion Proton, Ion Torrent has made available four library kits suitable for common next-gen sequencing applications. The available library solutions include Ion TargetSeq Exome Kit and Ion Total RNA-Seq Kit. Ion Torrent also offers different barcoding solutions for DNA/RNA applications. For example, 96 off-the-shelf barcodes for DNA 16 off-the-shelf barcodes for RNA are available for Ion Proton.
Ion One Touch and Ion Chef to Automate Prep Work
Life Technologies also made it easier for Ion Proton users by introducing two new automated prep instruments: the Ion OneTouch 2 System and Ion Chef System, that automates process of going from library to load on the Ion Chips. . The Ion OneTouch 2 System is ideal for labs medium throughput experiments using Ion Proton, while the Ion Chef System is ideal high-throughput requirements.
Ion PII Chip Will be Available Early Next year
Life Technologies also said that it will ship Ion PII Chip early next year (in six month’s time). Ion Torent’s Ion PII Chip is designed to sequence the human genome in just a few hours for $1,000. Ion Proton P II chip has 660 million wells and it can sequence a human genome with 20X coverage in a day.
In the press release announcing the Ion Proton shipment, Ion Torrent CEO and Founder Jonathan M. Rothberg said
The Ion Proton System is the outcome of 40 years of accumulated Moore’s law, starting with technologies that enabled the moon landing and that ultimately gave us modern electronics, computing and communications. Now, for the first time, we are leveraging the trillion dollars that has gone into semiconductor development to ‘see’ chemistry and directly decode genomes.”
Gregory T. Lucier, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Life Technologies, said
The Ion Proton System is an important milestone in our vision to drive innovation, economic growth and scientific progress by transforming the genome center into a simple desktop sequencer. A key area where we will see these future advances is in clinical research, where physician-scientists dealing with previously intractable conditions like cancer will finally have the tools to confidently understand, identify and treat the disease. This is an inflection point in the history of research, and there is much more to come.