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Transforming Methylated Nucleic Acids into Prostate Tumor Biomarkers

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 06 Apr 2014
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High quality oligonucleoside reagents and detection kits are facilitating research on methylated DNA and its relation to the molecular mechanisms that drive development of prostate cancer.

In the March 31, 2014, online edition of the Integrated DNA Technologies (Coralville, IA, USA) newsletter DECODED, Dr. Antoinette Perry, senior research fellow at the Institute of Molecular Medicine (Dublin, Ireland), described how use of materials supplied by Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT) facilitated her research team's study of prostate cancer.

Research in Dr. Perry’s laboratory is directed at understanding how changes in DNA methylation of coding and non-coding RNA genes are involved in driving prostate carcinogenesis. The investigators exploit specific epigenetic changes for early, noninvasive detection of aggressive prostate cancer. In the process, they hope to develop predictive epigenetic biomarkers—focusing both on circulating free nucleic acids and exosomes—that can be quantified by simple, liquid biopsy. Ultimately, they hope to use these biomarkers to develop a noninvasive test that will distinguish high-risk from lower-risk prostate tumors.

Among the tools being used are IDT PrimeTime qPCR Assays and ZEN Double-Quenched Probes. These probes increase the accuracy and reliability of 5’ nuclease qPCR experiments. They contain an internal quencher only nine bases from the 5’ fluorescent label. This shortened distance, particularly when combined with the standard 3’ quencher, significantly decreases background fluorescence and increases sensitivity. Since, the initial background fluorescence signal is much lower than with traditional probes, it is much easier to detect subsequent changes and, therefore, functionally increases assay sensitivity.

Integrated DNA Technologies is one of the largest suppliers of custom nucleic acids in the United States, serving academic, government, and commercial researchers in biotechnology, clinical diagnostics, and pharmaceutical development.

Related Links:
Integrated DNA Technologies
Institute of Molecular Medicine

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