QIAGEN launches targeted RNA panels for digital RNA sequencing


Sample to Insight workflows deliver more efficient, accurate gene expression profiling

On Monday, we announced the upcoming launch of QIAGEN’s new QIAseq Targeted RNA Panels for digital RNA sequencing. Today, we officially roll out more than 170 new targeted RNA panels for digital RNAseq that allows researchers to accurately quantify transcripts at single copy resolution.
What is digital RNA sequencing? Digital RNA sequencing is analogous to digital PCR, where quantification is based on direct counting of target molecules. By contrast, conventional RNA sequencing involves measuring the expression level of each transcript by the number sequenced fragments that map to that transcript. Sequence-dependent bias and amplification noise from various presequencing steps often complicate conventional RNAseq data, resulting in inaccurate and non-reproducible data.

QIAGEN’s QIAseq Targeted RNA panel uses the digital RNAseq strategy to overcome the limitations of conventional RNA sequencing. Briefly, the process involves addition of proprietary designed molecular barcodes to every cDNA molecule before PCR. So after PCR and sequencing, instead of counting the transcripts and mapping, RNA abundance is measured based on the number of unique barcode sequences measured for each cDNA molecule. The true winner is the combination of the molecular barcode technology and a 2-stage PCR-based integrated library preparation. These technologies, with QIAGEN’s proprietary design algorithms and chemistry, yield >97% specificity (reads on target), >95% uniformity (bases covered by at least 20% of the mean coverage depth) and sensitivity to detect 1 RNA copy per cell. Moreover, the kit requires only 25 ng RNA as starting material for the analysis of hundreds of genes.

But the technology isn’t the only thing that sets the QIAseq Targeted RNA Panels apart. QIAGEN’s Sample to Insight mission seeks to provide researchers with everything they need for biological discovery, from sample preparation all the way through to interpretation of the findings. The QIAseq panels are one part of a complete path that starts with our RNA isolation solutions and includes integrated NGS library preparation as well as Ingenuity Pathway Analysis software. The analysis modules are easy to use, requiring no bioinformatics expertise – if you have an NGS sequencing instrument, you can successfully gain insights with the QIAseq panel system.

Finally, the panels provide one more key advantage – biological relevance. QIAseq Targeted RNA Panels cover an extensive range of disease- and signaling pathway-focused genes, with each panel targeting 100 to 500 genes. The content is based on the latest recommendations from relevant medical and scientific literature. The panels also can be customized to include other genes of clinical and biological interest, with flexibility to analyze from 12 to 1000 genes simultaneously.

Want to know more about the digital RNAseq story? Hear from the developers of the technology in a webinar on RNAseq technology, and visit us at Digital RNA Sequencing. We think you’ll be as excited as we are, and we can’t wait to see what new discoveries emerge from this step forward in gene expression analysis.

If you’d like any help designing your experiments using this technology, write to us at DigitalRNAseq@qiagen.com.


This content has been adapted from the original QIAGEN press release.

Ali Bierly

Ali Bierly, PhD is a Global Market Manager in Translational Sciences at QIAGEN, and has written on a number of scientific topics in the biotech industry as the author of QIAGEN's Reviews Online. She received her PhD from Cornell University in 2009, studying the immune response to a protozoan parasite, Toxoplasma gondii. Ali has a keen interest in the emerging importance of microRNA and other circulating nucleic acids as biomarkers for disease.

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