New GeneChip® WT Pico Kit Prepares Array Target from Picogram Amounts of RNA

Affymetrix introduces GeneChip® WT Pico Kit for gene expression array target preparation from as little as 100 pg of total RNA input. Working with as few as 10 cells, the new kit offers a high degree of flexibility and precision, enabling analyses of samples too small for other methods as well as the interrogation of small subpopulations of cells within larger samples. This is particularly important to the study of heterogeneous solid tumor samples, hematologic malignancies, and other precious samples. 

For use with Affymetrix’ GeneChip Whole-Transcriptome (WT) Arrays, the new WT Pico Kit is compatible with small sample isolation techniques, including flow cytometry, laser capture microdissection, and fine needle aspiration. The kit prepares targets from multiple sample types, including fresh and fresh frozen tissues, cultured cells, FFPE specimens, and whole blood samples without a globin mRNA reduction step. The use of a single kit for multiple sample types improves the ability to better compare data from different samples, especially important for translational research.

This new target preparation kit, combined with the GeneChip® Human Transcriptome Array 2.0 (HTA 2.0) and Transcriptome Analysis Console Software, forms a powerful solution for precise cell subset analyses that are not possible with traditional whole-transcriptome analysis techniques, which require large numbers of cells and typically deliver measurement averages. Measurement of all transcript isoforms, including long non-coding RNA transcripts, is made possible by this high-resolution microarray-based gene expression profiling solution, which uses more than six million probes covering over 285,000 coding and non-coding transcripts and interrogating the entire length of each one.

Sample availability is a challenge in many areas such as stem cell, cancer, and translational research. Clinical samples are particularly precious because more and more studies are being carried out on each specimen.

“In addition to conserving samples and enabling analysis of samples that may only contain small amounts of RNA, the ability to zero in on smaller sets of cells can reveal information that is hidden in larger cell populations,” explains Christian Reece, product manager for Affymetrix. “Cancer researchers working with solid tumors and hematologic malignancies are particularly interested at looking at smaller and smaller groups of cells.”