Forensics laboratories performing human identification in criminal casework and database cases have a new option for a capillary electrophoresis (CE) instrument to support their workflow. The Spectrum CE System presents a new alternative in a market that has historically featured few options for instrumentation providers. By eliminating scheduling challenges and supporting chemistry from key vendors, the instrument gives forensic analysts unmatched flexibility in how they process samples using short tandem repeat (STR) analysis.
“This instrument will change how forensics labs process their STR samples,” says Sharon Sheridan, Director of Genetic Identity at Promega. “The Spectrum CE System represents years of learning from analysts who work hands-on with CE instrumentation paired with unwavering dedication from our engineering teams. The result is an instrument that not only fulfills the specific needs of those analysts today, but will also anticipate where the field is going in the future.”
This is the first CE instrument developed and produced by Promega to complement its existing portfolio of STR analysis kits. Promega has been developing and providing products for DNA-based human identification for more than 25 years.
The Spectrum CE System offers several unique features developed in response to input from the forensics community. The instrument holds four 96-well plates that are continuously accessible while the instrument is running, allowing labs to reduce scheduling conflicts and forgo batch processing. This also enables 100% utilization during work hours and “off-hours” runs to dramatically increase effective weekly output.
While Promega is an established supplier of PowerPlex® STR analysis chemistry, the Spectrum CE System was developed to function using STR kits from key vendors. With its team of former forensic practitioners, Promega pledges to provide the same level of support and service to labs, regardless of the STR chemistry they are using.
“Promega is dedicated to supporting customers that are using not only our own chemistries, but also competing chemistries that are on the market,” says Cristopher Cowan, Director of Instrumentation R&D. “We don’t necessarily need you to always be running Promega chemistry.”
The Spectrum CE System is compatible with 5-, 6- and 8-color STR kits, including the Promega 8-color PowerPlex® System that offers more meaningful information from each sample, particularly with low-quality casework samples.
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