• Fluidigm (South San Francisco) has launched the second line of nanofluidic chips — digital arrays — run on its BioMark system for qPCR analysis. Digital arrays are used for applications that require absolute counting of target molecules, often within samples as small as a single cell. This method is known as digital PCR, which, until now, has been too impractical for routine use. Digital PCR works on the principle that target sequences may be counted if a sample is diluted such that only one copy of the target may be present in a well after the sample is distributed to all wells on a microwell plate. Fluidigm previously launched dynamic arrays, which provide orders of magnitude greater efficiency for real-time qPCR compared with 384-well plates. Fluidigm distributes systems based on the properties of integrated fluidic circuits to precisely control fluids on a nanovolume scale.

• Possis Medical (Minneapolis) reported receiving FDA approval for its new AngioJet Ultra Thrombectomy System, calling it the next-generation, completely re-engineered version of Possis’ AngioJet Rheolytic Thrombectomy System. AngioJet is marketed for blood clot removal (thrombectomy) from arterial and venous blood vessels. The new Ultra System features a simple and fast setup process, the flexibility to use a broad range of catheters, a sleeker design, lighter weight, and handling improvements that make it significantly easier to maneuver than the previous AngioJet drive unit. Features of the advanced system include a simple setup process; flexibility to use a broad range of catheters, and a “sleeker” design and lighter weight. Ultra is 46% lighter than the previous AngioJet drive unit and its ergonomic design make it easier to move around the hospital. Possis said it will conduct market evaluations of the Ultra System at key sites throughout the U.S., with full market release set for summer 2007. Possis manufactures cardiovascular and vascular treatment devices.

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