New NGS workflow accelerates the detection of SARS-CoV-2 variants including Omicron
WALTHAM, Mass.–Dec. 8, 2021– PerkinElmer, Inc. (NYSE: PKI), a global leader committed to innovating for a healthier world, today announced the research use only (RUO) launch of the NEXTFLEXVariant-Seq™ SARS-CoV-2 Kit v2® to accelerate the detection of SARS-CoV-2 variants. This complete next generation sequencing (NGS) solution will allow laboratories to increase sequencing throughput and make reliable variant identifications.
Using positive SARS-CoV-2 samples, the NEXTFLEX Variant-Seq SARS-CoV-2 Kit v2 detects mutations associated with all SARS-CoV-2 variants, including the latest Variant of Concern (VOC) identified by the World Health Organization, Omicron (B.1.1.529). This kit offers substantial benefits to laboratories in terms of speed, scalability and cost savings by incorporating newly developed NEXTFLEX normalization beads, which reduces turnaround time by three hours on average for 96 samples (when compared to other standard library prep kits that require quantification and normalization of individual samples before pooling).
“The emergence of the Omicron variant has reaffirmed the important role that SARS-CoV-2 surveillance will play in ending the COVID-19 pandemic,” said James Atwood, general manager of Applied Genomics, PerkinElmer. “The NEXTFLEX Variant-Seq SARS-CoV-2 Kit v2 workflow was specifically designed to meet the needs of the surveillance community by increasing speed from sample to result, increasing throughput and reducing workflow complexity.”
Additionally, the NEXTFLEX Variant-Seq SARS-CoV-2 Kit v2 uses 1,536 Unique Dual Index (UDI) barcodes to enable the sequencing of 6,000 SARS-CoV-2 libraries in one flow cell. This provides extremely high throughput and minimizes per sample costs associated with sequencing.
PerkinElmer also offers the PKamp™ VariantDetect™ SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR Assay for the simultaneous qualitative detection and differentiation of several known SARS-CoV-2 mutations including Omicron. Similarly, this assay allows labs to perform second-tier mutation typing from positive SARS-CoV-2 samples. It is compatible with all commonly available RT-PCR instruments and delivers results within two hours.