Opentrons launches fully automated thermocycler at $4,000

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Biotech startup Opentrons has launched a fully automated thermocycler, priced at $4,000, which has been designed to help biologists with automated end-to-end PCR based workflow.

According to Opentrons, there are several products that are currently available in the market which enable biologists to automate important segments of their workflows. However, human assistance is needed for most of the lab robots to move on to the next step of the workflow. This makes the workflow into smaller automated sections which require scientists to manipulate the samples on their own, thereby leaving them to carry out repetitive and error-prone lab work.

Opentrons said that its automated thermocycler fits directly on the deck of the OT-2 pipetting robot, and is as fast and accurate as machines that cost 10 times more than it.

The biotech claimed that its automated thermocycler enables end-to-end automation of key protocols such as NGS Library Prep, PCR genotyping, PCR mutagenesis, DNA assembly, and others.

Biologists can either download protocols for pivotal experiments like NGS Library Prep, DNA assembly, and genotyping PCR, all with the click of a button, or generate their own from scratch without requiring programming skills or a technical team, said Opentrons.

Furthermore, the biotech company said that the affordability, easy-to-use operation and powerful automation of its new thermocycler can change the way biologists execute their day-to-day work.

Will Canine – Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer of Opentrons said: “Before thermocyclers, biologists ran PCR by moving tubes from water bath to water bath by hand.

“Thermocyclers automated that tedious process, and we’re now taking it one step further to also automate the pipetting steps before and after thermocycling — all at a revolutionary price point accessible to biologists worldwide.”

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