Can imec bring semiconductor economies of scale to genetic analysis technology?

July 23, 2012 — Pacific Biosciences of California, Inc. (NASDAQ:PACB) will join research center imec in a multi-year research collaboration focused on the development of advanced microchips for highly multiplexed single-molecule genetic analysis. Pacific Biosciences brings its proprietary zero-mode waveguide (ZMW) technology; imec is contributing expertise in nanophotonics, CMOS sensors, technology integration and fabrication.

The goal is to scale the capacity and throughput of PACB’s ZMW-based Single Molecule, Real-Time (SMRT) analysis technology via microchips, said Michael Hunkapiller, president and CEO of Pacific Biosciences. Nanoscale semiconductor manufacturing has the potential to bring economies of scale to the leading-edge biomedical/life sciences sector, added Luc Van den hove, president and CEO, imec.

Imec will leverage the research competencies of its Life Science Program with its CMORE technology platforms to deliver full custom integrated nano/microsystem solutions, Van den hove said. At imec Technology Forum, held this month in San Francisco with SEMICON West, Van den hove and other imec presenters noted the opportunities for life sciences and semiconductor ecosystems to collaborate.

Pacific Biosciences of California, Inc. (NASDAQ:PACB) offers the PacBio RS High Resolution Genetic Analyzer to help scientists solve genetically complex problems. The company’s products enable targeted sequencing to more comprehensively characterize genetic variations; de novo genome assembly to more fully identify, annotate and decipher genomic structures; and DNA base modification identification to help characterize epigenetic regulation and DNA damage. For more information about Pacific Biosciences, please visit www.pacb.com.

Imec performs world-leading research in nanoelectronics. Further information on imec can be found at www.imec.be.

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