Oxford Nanopore Hints at a New Product PromethION?

It looks like Oxford Nanopore might have just launched a new product called PromethION at 4th Next-Generation Sequencing Conference yesterday at San Diego. There was a single tweet from Chris Mason from Weill Cornell Medical College that said Oxford Nanopore announces plans for the PromethION and it will have 2,000 channels producing data at the rate of 1G/min.

The conference website says that Clive Brown, Chief Technology Officer, Oxford Nanopore Technologies is one of the invited speakers. He presumably made this announcement.

Oxford Nanopore Announces a New Product PromethION?

Oxford Nanopore Announces a New Product PromethION?

The earliest reference to PromethION from Oxford Nanopore technology was a trademark registration by Oxford Nanopore. Earlier this year Oxford Nanopore registered for promethION, panthION and SmidgION and this first noticed by Mick Watson. At that time the name promethION hinted a product geared towards methylation or protein.

The new announcement is intriguing, since there is no other details/mention of the new product. The tweet mentions 2,000 channels, but not clear on what type of product and that makes it even more puzzling.

A channel in a Oxford Nanopore device refers to the number of nanopores, where sequencing reactions can happen. For example, the MinION from Oxford Nanopore has 512 nanopores/channels.  As per the original announcement, Oxford Nanopore’s GridION is supposed to have 2,000 channels and it might be extended up to 8,000 channels. So with 2,000 channels PromethION can’t be just doing DNA sequencing like GridION. Something else? or may be the specs is wrong. 

Here is the excerpt from the MinION/GridION product announcement in 2012

Oxford Nanopore’s GridION platform was presented, consisting of a scalable network device – a node – designed for use with a consumable cartridge. Each cartridge is initially designed for real-time sequencing by 2,000 individual nanopores at any one time.  Alternative configurations with more processing cores will become available in early 2013 containing over 8,000 nanopores.

Anybody with more information?



  1. This is just my conjecture, but if the GridION concept is not yet cost competitive, makes more sense to postpone that product until it is and extend portable sequencers further. It’s a differentiator.


  1. […] of the highlights of the talk is the announcement that the rumored new bigger Nanopore platform PromethION will be shown at ASHG […]

Speak Your Mind