Your Independent Sequencing Guide
Emerging Technologies > ZS Genetics
ZS Genetics is developing a single molecule sequencer based on annular dark-field scanning transmission electron microscopy (ADF-STEM). Since native DNA is invisible to the STEM imager, they’ll be incorporating ‘ZSG labels’, modified nucleotides with heavy atoms or other compounds to make them visible. The modified nucleotides will be incorporated via a template-directed DNA polymerase (essentially a single round of PCR). In a proof of principle study published in October 2012, they demonstrated the incorporation and visualization of mercury-labeled dUTP in a 7Kb+ strand of DNA.
While they are still far off from a commercial launch, they do have some targets that they are shooting for. The system should be able to generate reads of up to 50kb and they’re aiming for ~$300 for a 10X human genome. (While current shorter read technologies generally aim for 30X or higher, the ultra long reads should allow for much lower coverage.) The instrument will likely be priced somewhere between desktop systems (~$125k) and high throughput systems (~$700k).
Status: prototype development
Projected commercial availability: unknown
Technology Description: Bell, D.C. et al. (2012) DNA Base Identification by Electron Microscopy. Microscopy and Microanalysis 18, 1049-1053
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