Best in metabolomics class

AB SCIEX, Genedata & LECO form partnership for cross-platform metabolomics data analysis solution

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BASEL, Switzerland—Metabolomics researchers want complete,efficient turnkey solutions, and three companies have joined forces to providethem. At the 9th Annual Conference of the Metabolomics Society in July, ABSciex of Framingham, Mass., Genedata of Basel, Switzerland and LECO of St.Joseph, Mich. announced a technology partnership for a collaborative softwaresystem designed to enable metabolomics researchers to comprehensively processand analyze experimental data across different gas chromatography/massspectrometry (GC/MS) and liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS)platforms.
The companies say they are attempting to provide a seamlesssolution to extract valuable biological information from high-fidelity LC andGC data to give researchers the ultimate tool for comprehensive metabolomicsinvestigations.
Metabolomics, the systematic study of the unique chemicalfingerprint or metabolomic profile left by cellular processes, is used in pharmaceuticals,disease research and nutrition. All metabolomic applications comparemetabolomics profiles of different sample sets to each other to identifymetabolites that correlate with a given phenotype.
Representatives of the three companies were quick to praisetheir partners as leaders in their respective fields who will approach theircustomers collectively. All say they hope for a long-term relationship "thatenables and empowers our collective customers and lets everybody shine," in thewords of Dr. Jeffrey Patrick, director of marketed technology at LECOSeparation Science, which offers analytical instrumentation includingGC-time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC-TOFMS) and LC-time-of-flight massspectrometry (LC-TOFMS) systems.
"The value of the collaboration is to give customers achance to understand the biology with a total solution that expedites theworkflow toward the best solution by getting the most knowledge out of the hugeamounts of data," says Aaron Hudson, senior director of academic and omicsbusiness at AB Sciex, which offers tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS), atechnique in which quadrupole mass analyzers are used in series to obtainquantitative information for a variety of different analytes.
"The important thing is to remove bottlenecks," explainsOthmar Pfannes, CEO of Genedata, which transforms data into intelligence withsoftware solutions designed to make research data accessible and understandableand research processes more efficient. "Data analysis is a key issue for companies wanting to go to large-scaleanalysis. What could have taken months now takes hours because of thissoftware."
The collaboration of the three companies has resulted in thelatest version of Genedata's Expressionist MSX software, developed for metabolomicsexperiments performed with LECO's and AB SCIEX's MS systems. Compatible withother data formats and technologies as well, Genedata's Expressionist MSXsoftware can be downloaded directly via the internet for immediateinstallation. 
Expressionist MSX provides an end-to-end solution for themost widely used metabolomics applications. LC-MS and GC-MS are the primarymetabolomics technologies supported. Based on Genedata Expressionist for MassSpectrometry, the Genedata best-of-breed automated enterprise-level solution,Expressionist MSX does not require many of the manual intervention stepscommonly required with other MS software. It accurately performs data analysisin minutes, eliminating the manual manipulation of data.
"High-quality, mature and proprietary algorithms withinExpressionist MSX generate reliable results with fewer false positives andfalse negatives," Pfannes explains. "With our algorithms publishable,scientifically valid conclusions can be quickly and easily obtained and shared.The completely turnkey nature of Expressionist MSX provides an end-to-endsolution for all scientists to perform high-quality analysis with a finebalance between ease of use and flexibility. The potential for full control ateach analysis step is provided with zoom and drill-down capabilities, whichenable visual inspection and exploration of known areas of interest withinchromatograms."
According to Hudson, Genedata was already making softwarethat worked with AB Sciex's systems.
"Now it's been optimized and streamlined, so the customerscan make the best choices for solving their problems," he says. "With thediversity of metabolites, it enhances the commercial potential of theresearch."
LECO's Patrick adds, "Now all the data from our systems canbe collectively interrogated by the researcher in the most facile manner. It'sa good step forward to get the best data available."
"The ability to bring data from different vendors andtechnologies onto a single platform, which can process and merge data formaximum biological inference, is where the industry needs to be to effectivelyevaluate the entire metabolome," summarizes Dr. Vladimir V. Tolstikov,scientist of tailored therapeutics at Eli Lilly & Co.

AB Sciex combines chromatography with Beckman Coulter'sCE business
FRAMINGHAM, Mass.—AB Sciex Pte. Ltd. also announced lastmonth the combination of its chromatography business with the capillaryelectrophoresis (CE) business from Beckman Coulter Life Sciences in an effort toadvance separations science. This move brings together Beckman Coulter'sexpertise in microscale separation with the expertise in microfluidics of theEksigent chromatography team of AB Sciex.

The partnership includes the transition of personnel as well as CE technologiesand resources from Beckman Coulter Life Sciences to AB Sciex. The Eksigent LCteam of the Sciex separations business and the CE team of Beckman Coulter willwork together to develop breakthrough, integrated applications that provide fastand efficient separations of drugs, drug metabolites, organic acids, aminoacids, low molecular-weight amines, peptides, nucleic acids and nucleosides.
By the end of the third quarter, the Sciex separationsbusiness will manage both the standalone Beckman Coulter CE products and theintegrated CE-MS technology. The CE products will continue to be branded byBeckman Coulter. The separations business will also continue to manage allchromatography products, including Eksigent nano-LC and micro-LC systems,chips, software and columns.
"We are bringing together the best in CE with the best innano-LC and micro-LC as a unified team to broaden the range of solutionsavailable to our customers," said Rainer Blair, president of AB Sciex. "Byintegrating the Beckman Coulter CE team into the Sciex separations business, wewill be able to take CE and our chromatography solutions to a whole new level.We are committed to investing in our separations business for long-termsuccess."

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