Industry News: Corbett Life Science wins Prestigious 2006 Frost & Sullivan North American Award for Technology Innovation

30 Nov 2006

Frost & Sullivan selects Corbett Life Science as the recipient of the 2006 Frost & Sullivan Award for Technology Innovation for the U.S. qRT-PCR market. Corbett Life Science’s Rotor-Gene™ rotary-based thermocycler employs a radically different approach that addresses many of the issues that traditional real-time instruments fail to solve. The centrifugal design results in much greater thermal and optical uniformity and is the cornerstone of Corbett’s conceptually novel thermocycler instruments. It provides more accurate analysis, which is vital to quantitative real-time experiments and opens the door to exciting new applications such as HRM (high resolution melt).

The strong growth of the real-time analyzer market can be attributed to market participants’ proactive expansion of their instruments’ capabilities to monitor mRNA expression levels. Most instruments continue to employ a standard heat block, though market participants have experimented with newer composite materials to achieve uniform temperature across the block. But performance issues persist. With the rotary-based thermocycler, Corbett Life Science has taken an entirely new approach, one that rids the process of a metal block altogether and ensures near-perfect thermal and optical consistency across all samples.

"Corbett’s innovative approach utilizes a novel fan-based system that changes temperature equally across constantly rotating sample tubes. In addition, a unique optical temperature verification (OTV) accessory rotor containing thermochromic liquid crystals is used for thermal calibration and verification," notes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Shankar Sellappan, Ph.D.

The complexity of molecular signaling presumes that cellular events are dictated by multiple genetic messages and a solid understanding of what these messages say will prove to be a goldmine for researchers. Corbett Life Science has raised the bar on real-time comparative genetic screening by installing six separate channels, one more than the closest competitor. Each channel uses separate excitation and detection optics to span the entire UV to infrared optical spectrum. This expands the range of fluorescent dyes that can be used and also the potential number of mRNA messages that can be monitored simultaneously.

In addition, traditional systems employ stationary heat blocks that invariably result in adherence of some of the reaction sample to the top of the tube during the repetitive heating and cooling cycles. The rotary design used by the Corbett Rotor-Gene system creates a centrifugal force that retains the sample at the bottom of the reaction tube while removing any air bubbles and sample condensation, thereby maximizing reagent interaction. This exceptional product benefit gives Corbett Life Science a clear competitive edge in the market.

"Corbett’s novel technologies suggest the rather static real-time analyzer market is still capable of innovation," notes Dr. Sellappan. "The successful incorporation of these innovations is expected to play a significant role in the growth of the company and also influence future designs of qRT-PCR and PCR instrumentation."

Frost & Sullivan presents this Award to the company that has demonstrated technological superiority within its industry. It recognizes the ability of the company to successfully develop and introduce technology, formulate a well-designed product family, and make significant product performance contributions to the industry.

Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognize companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research in order to identify best practices in the industry.