Pacific Biosciences (PacBio) announced that it is launching its next version of PacBio sequencer, PacBio RS II. The new PacBio RS II can produce 5,000 bp read lengths on an average and the longest reads are above 20,000 bp in length. In addition, in the new PacBio RS II, PacBio has doubled the number of simultaneously observable sequencing reactions and thus doubling the throughput of the sequencer.
PacBio says that all the improvements made to the existing version of the sequencer are also available in the new PacBio RS; including
PacBio’s C2 and XL chemistries, new analysis software with automated de novo assembly, increased consensus accuracy to greater than 99.999% (Q50), a quadrupling of average read lengths, and a 10-fold reduction in input DNA required.
PacBio RS II will be available in the second quarter of 2013 and the users of existing PacBio RS will be able to upgrade to the new sequencer (for a yet to be announced price). Announcing the new PacBio RS II, Kevin Corcoran, Senior Vice President of Market Development, said
In addition to providing more, high-quality data in a highly robust system, the PacBio RS II includes all of the performance improvements we have made since we launched the commercial PacBio RS System in 2011. The combined improvements in accuracy, reliability, and throughput, as well as increased cost efficiencies, are what many researchers have been waiting for in order to adopt SMRT Sequencing in their laboratories.
Richard Gibbs, Ph.D.,from Baylor College of Medicine, one of the early access users of PacBio RS II said
I have been very impressed with the progress Pacific Biosciences has made with this unique technology. With each performance upgrade, our ability to handle more complex projects increases. We are now using the system to improve the sequence of mammalian genomes.