Yale-BioHaven Entrepreneurship Seminar: "454 Life Sciences — Aiming for the $10,000 Human Genome Sequence"

The Yale BioHaven Entrepreneurship Seminar series focuses on 454 Life Sciences on Wednesday, November 8 from 3:30 to 5 p.m. in the Anlyan Center Auditorium of Yale Medical School, 300 Cedar Street.

The speaker will be Christopher McLeod, President and C.E.O. of 454 Life Sciences, established in 2000 as a technology development subsidiary of the Branford, Conn.-based biotechnology company CuraGen Corporation. 454 Life Sciences develops and commercializes novel instrumentation and technology for conducting high-throughput nucleotide sequencing, with specific application to whole-genome sequencing and ultra-deep sequencing of target genes.

Neanderthal genome is being analyzed with 454 Sequencing™ for comparison with human [credit: 454]

The hallmarks of 454 Sequencing™ are that it has simple, unbiased sample preparation and high capacity for parallel sequencing. This technology has dramatically increased the feasibility and lowered the cost of large-scale sequencing projects such as the initiative to analyze an individual human genome for $10,000.

The 454 Life Sciences instrumentation, the Genome Sequencer 20™ System, allows one individual to prepare and sequence an entire genome after performing a single sample preparation — no matter the size of the genome studied. A single instrument using patented light emitting sequencing chemistries produces sequence information at more than 60-times the capacity of instruments using the current technology.

In 2005, the company entered into an agreement with Roche for the promotion, sale, and distribution of 454 Life Sciences’ sequencing systems, including proprietary kits and reagents. 454 Sequencing™ is being used today by the Max Planck Institute to reconstruct the genome of the Neandertal man, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Broad Institute to detect cancer gene mutations, and the International Census of Marine Microbes to study microbial life in the world’s oceans and its impact on our ecosystems.

Refreshments and networking follow the seminar from 5 to 7 p.m. Registration is free, but advance RSVP to Larry Banks or the Yale Office of Cooperative Research at 203-436-8096 is required. Directions to the event are available on line.

Yale BioHaven Entrepreneurship Seminars are sponsored by the Yale Office of Cooperative Research and Connecticut United for Research Excellence (CURE), and jointly promoted by Yale Entrepreneurial Society (YES) and Yale Biotechnology & Pharmaceutical Society (YBPS). For further information on the seminar, please contact Tracy Huang at 203-785-3846 or tracy.huang@yale.edu.

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Janet Rettig Emanuel: janet.emanuel@yale.edu, 203-432-2157