JENA, Germany—Buildingon informal work that has been conducted since late last year, CyBio AGannounced last month a collaboration to provide validated application protocolsfor its liquid handling equipment with selected reagents from Madison,Wis.-based Promega. The deal is important for CyBio as it looks to enter newmarket areas.
"CyBio has been very strong on the front end of drugscreening where researchers do the primary screens," says Mechthild Geyer,corporate strategy project manager with CyBio. "Promega has a lot of goodsolutions, especially on the late screens, in toxicology and so on. This givesus the opportunity to bridge to more labs where we haven't been known in thepast."
In particular, CyBio is looking to leverage its technologyto meet the growing demand for researchers conducting cellular assays with itsCyBi-Well, CyBi-Well vario pipettors and CyBi-Drop liquid handler. According toinformation provided by the company, its technology combines optimizedpipetting speed, secure sealing and alignment to produce an automated platformthat can provide the gentle dispensing needed for cellular assays.
Both companies presented information on automation ofPromega MultiTox assays with the CyBi-well pipettor and its scalability at therecent SBS show in March, which is around the time the companies began talkingabout creating a formal collaboration.
According to Neal Cosby, manager, drug screening at Promega,the arrangement with CyBio is similar to arrangements the company has withother tools manufacturers. "Often, a company will loan us their equipment andwe can create a typical lab set-up here," he notes. "We will use our assays tocreate validated protocols and then will make the result available to ourcustomers."
Cosby says Promega remains vendor neutral when it comes tothis kind of collaboration, but that it is important for the company to havethese data available as a service to their customers.
"Having this information is a good sales tool, researcherscan see the information we provide and it can makes for an easier sale to thecustomer," he notes.
The promotional activity of the collaboration will takeplace in the presentation of posters at industry trade shows and conferences,as well as posting of the protocols on both companies' Web sites.
Future work for the twocompanies will incorporate additional CyBio tools, including the nextgeneration CyBi Nanojet, called the NanojetFAP, for "flexible assay processor",which is due out later this summer.