CARLSBAD, Calif., Dec. 31,
2011/PRNewswire/ -- Life Technologies
Corporation (NASDAQ: LIFE) today announced that membership
in the , the online open-access resource for Ion Torrent
usersdevelopers, has tripled to 5,000 people in just three
months. The sudden jump in membership began after Ion
Torrent published its sequencing protocols, analysis
softwaredatasets for the Ion Personal Genome
Machine(PGM), the world's
first benchtop sequencer, on Sept 30thof this
The Ion Community, which was established in March, has
grown by about 150 new members a weekis expected to reach
10,000 members in 2012. Most of the community members are
either current Ion Torrent users, people who want to learn
more about the system by reviewing the datasetsprotocols,
or developers working on novel applications.
"The amazing growth of the Ion Community
underscores the huge demand there is in the scientific
community to work with an open access platformparticipate
in how that platform develops," said Ion Torrent
FounderCEO Dr. Jonathan M. Rothberg.
"Sharing information will accelerate the development
of Ion semiconductor sequencinginevitably drive
breakthroughs in fields including medicine,
Eric Olivares, the most popular online
sequencing community, said: "The Ion Community has
embraced the same principles that have driven the growth of
SEQanswers: unrestricted access to information,
protocols,inter-user communication. In a rapidly evolving
field where hardware, analysis algorithms,wet-lab methods
change monthly, I am excited to see a major technology
provider embrace opennessacknowledge that their users will
drive innovation on the platform."
New Life Grand Challenges Dataset
Ion Torrent also released its next round of benchmark data
for the Life Grand Challenges competition. Participants are
challenged to drive performance improvement of the Ion PGM
sequencer in three areas: sample preparation, base
yieldaccuracy. To win the $1 millionprize in
any of these three categories, participants must beat the
internal record at Ion Torrent by two-fold, through their
own protocol improvements between JanuaryMarch of 2012.
The latest Grand Challenges exhibits a
average read length of 241 bphigh quality, (Q20) reads as
long as 318 bp. An Ion 318chip was
used, generating 1.27 Gb of data. All participants must now
use the Ion 318 chip, which delivers 100-fold more data
than the initial 10 Mb specification of the Ion
314chip, giving participants room to achieve
the new benchmarks. Raw voltage dataa cloud-based computing
environment are available by registering for the Life Grand
Challenges on the Ion Community. Entries for this round of
the Life Grand Challenges close on Mar. 15,
To win the challenges, participants must match or exceed
these specific benchmarks:
Scalability: A total of 2.54 Gb must be sequenced, twice
the recorded 1.27 Gb
Speed: Sample preparation must be reduced to four hours,
from the current six hours.
Accuracy: The accuracy rate must increase to 99.5, or one
error per 200 base pair reads, from the documented 99
percent accuracy of 2011.
"I believe the Accuracy Challenge is achievable
- in fact I came close to the benchmark earlier in the year
-- because it only requires a computeran idea," said
Monkol Lek, a doctoral candidate at the University of
Sydney, who performs technical work with Ion PGM
System datawrites the blog. "Life Technologies
has generously provided a wealth of resources in the form
of data sets, source codeanalysis tools available through
the Ion Community. The improvements in the Torrent Suite
software have demonstrated improving accuracy is composed
of common problems in which standard techniques can be
The benchmarksother information are available at the
website. Membersothers can follow the Grand
Challenges on hear at blogtalkradio.
Ion Torrent also announced that it has given away
$20,000four boxes of Ion 316 chips as part of
the new RecognitION program, which acknowledges users'
uniquevaluable contributions to the Ion Community.
RecognitION distributes points to those who participate in
the communitythe points are redeemed for rewards ranging
from a T-shirt to an iPad to a free Ion PGM Sequencer.
Users who accumulate 150,000 points win an Ion PGM
Sequencera paid trip to a scientific conference.
For Research Use Only. Not intended for any animal or
human therapeutic or diagnostic use.
The content provided herein may relate to products that
have not been officially releasedis subject to change
About Life Technologies Corporation
Life Technologies Corporation is a global biotechnology
company dedicated to improving the human condition. Our
systems, consumablesservices enable researchers to
accelerate scientificmedical advancements that make life
even better. Life Technologies customers do their work
across the biological spectrum, working to advance the
fields of discoverytranslational research, molecular
medicine, stem cell-based therapies, food safetyanimal
The company manufactures both molecular diagnosticresearch
use only products. Life Technologies' industry-leading
brands are found in nearly every life sciences lab in the
worldinclude innovative instrument systems under the
Applied BiosystemsIon Torrent names, as well as the
broadest range of reagents with its Invitrogen, GIBCO,
Ambion, Molecular ProbesTaqMan® products. Life Technologies
had sales of $3.6 billionin 2010, has a
workforce of approximately 11,000 people, has a presence in
approximately 160 countriespossesses one of the largest
intellectual property estates in the life sciences
industry, with approximately 3,900 patentsexclusive
licenses. For more information on how we make a difference,
please visit .
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This press release includes forward-looking statements
about our anticipated results that involve
risksuncertainties. Some of the information contained in
this press release, including, but not limited to,
statements as to industry trendsLife Technologies'
plans, objectives, expectationsstrategy for its business,
contains forward-looking statements that are subject to
risksuncertainties that could cause actual results or
events to differ materially from those expressed or implied
by such forward-looking statements. Any statements that are
not statements of historical fact are forward-looking
statements. When used, the words "believe,"
"estimate," "expect"the like, and/or
future tense or conditional constructions
("will," "may," "could,"
"should," etc.), or similar expressions, identify
certain of these forward-looking statements. Important
factors that could cause actual results to differ
materially from those in the forward-looking statements are
detailed in filings made by Life Technologies with the
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no obligation to update or revise any such forward-looking
statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.
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SOURCE Life Technologies Corporation