PentaBase A/S, Denmark, May 16th, 2022 – PentaBase is proud to announce a new and pending patent: The world´s first qPCR-based assay for detection of DNA methylation without pre-treatment. The new product line for PentaBase will be called EpiDirect™, and the long-term goal is to make cancer screening tools that can detect cancers in cell-free DNA earlier than any current method. The innovation incorporates our proprietary technology called intercalating nucleic acids (INA™), which significantly reduces turn-around time from more than two days to merely two hours. Several hands-on steps are removed, ensuring higher reliability and overall quality assurance.
The current gold standard applied for DNA methylation status consists of a three to four-step process in which the method of bisulfite conversion is utilised as a pre-treatment of samples. The converted DNA can be analysed by PCR and/or sequencing. The pre-treatment is time-consuming and can cause degradation of highly valuable sample material. The worst-case scenario is a failure in the methylation analysis. However, with the new patent application by PentaBase, this single point of failure is completely taken out of the equation.
About the method
The methylation status of DNA is detected without any pre-treatment of samples. It is possible to incorporate PentaBase’s INA™, which has shown a high affinity for methylated cytosines. The INA™ is used to amplify methylated DNA directly on purified DNA selectively. This is the very first method allowing direct analysis of DNA methylation using qPCR. At this point, the method is developed to analyse the methylation status of the MGMT promoter, and the marker will soon enter the validation phase. Several biomarkers have been found relevant for clinical testing, but only a few have been implemented in clinical use. One of the markers used today is the methylation status of the MGMT promoter, which is used for optimal treatment selection in patients with glioblastoma. DNA methylation has shown to be an important key in understanding the development of cancer and several other diseases. We will continue our quest to use our substantial knowledge about real-time PCR and our proprietary DNA technologies to improve and expand the method to other highly relevant cancer markers.
About PentaBase A/S
PentaBase is a Danish, science-driven company built on unique DNA technologies, creating innovative workflows and PCR analyses. We are enabling personalised treatment using sensitive, specific and robust monitoring of genetic biomarkers