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Spectrum CE System is a new capillary electrophoresis system designed to meet the STR analysis needs of forensic and paternity labs.
Still working…
Smart tracking
Fast software
Flexible scheduling
Latest technology
Fashionable service
Development team
8-dye analysis
Cross-compatibility
High capacity
Reduced backlogs
Full support
Spectrum CE shell
Overview
Capacity
8-Dye

Getting Started
Speeding Ahead
Data Driven
Support Network

Latest Technology

Explore the world of Spectrum

Forensic analysts have a busy schedule filled with processing challenging casework samples and planning urgent, last-minute runs. Science should not be so stressful. The Spectrum CE System is a capillary electrophoresis instrument designed to offer more efficient STR analysis and better results, built with input from analysts throughout the field.

This site is regularly updated as we progress towards launch. You can also sign up to receive regular bimonthly updates with the latest Spectrum information.

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Benefits

  • More information from challenging sample types

  • Increased sample processing capacity

  • Flexibility to add samples during runs

  • Comprehensive service and support

  • Easy-to-use software and data analysis

  • Multi-kit compatibility

  • Small footprint, efficient use of lab space


The newest addition to your lab

Good design means more than just looking pretty on a lab bench; it also means caring about how you interact with Spectrum on a daily basis. How do we realize that? With doors that open vertically to give quick access to consumables without knocking over materials on the bench. Spectrum's increased plate capacity also allows you to get more done in the same space.

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One Workflow. One Supplier.

We're launching new consumables designed specifically for use with Spectrum, and executed thoughtfully to make your work easier. Whether it's polymer pouches that install upside down to eliminate bubbles, or RFID-tagged arrays that let you automatically record usage, you'll appreciate these touches. You'll also appreciate getting all your consumables from a single supplier.


Universal Consumables

It's not just capillary electrophoresis. When you perform PCR, qPCR, or a capillary electrophoresis run, you'll be able to get all the supplies you need from a trusted partner.

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Semi-Skirted and Barcoded 96-Well Plates

Semi-Skirted and Barcoded 96-Well Plates

96-Well Septa Mats

96-Well Septa Mats

Formamide

CE-Grade Formamide

Optical Plate Seals

Optical Plate Seals for qPCR

Strip Caps for PCR

Strip Caps for PCR

Flexible Scheduling

Spectrum is designed to gain efficiency and productivity

With Spectrum CE, you can swap plates during runs, start runs at different times, and enjoy the convenience of auto-analysis of samples. There's no more waiting for the current runs to finish before starting another, so you get more done in less time. How will the joy of more quickly getting to your last sample move you?

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Handling

Capable of handling the unexpected

The story of Jay and Isabella: Jay's team has a massive SAK backlog with no end in sight, yet Isabella has to fit urgent casework samples into the mix. Jay and Isabella had to regularly work around each other's schedules, yet this unpredictability wasn't much fun for their families. The continuous access of the four plate positions with Spectrum CE allowed Jay and Isabella to run the instrument instead of the instrument running them. Any of Jay's plates that Isabella displaces can easily be scheduled to run overnight.

Keep your loading bay bustling

The story of Rachel: Life doesn't always fit nicely on a 96-well plate, but that doesn't mean you have to make sacrifices to productivity. Rachel has 24 samples left to process. Waiting to batch with another analyst means she can't quickly wrap up her testing on a case. Thankfully, with four plate positions, continuous access and simple plate reprioritization, Rachel can sneak her plate in without getting in the way of her colleagues.

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High Capacity

Process more samples and free up lab space (have your cake and eat it too)

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FourPlates

Spectrum has four 96-well plate positions, and provides continuous access to those plates. This means that you can run partial plates and add samples during a run—gaining scheduling flexibility while still maintaining productivity.

Choose your system

Choose from 8- or 24- capillary systems. Your choice, depending on your analysis needs.

Take the fast route, straight to the summit

If you're looking to get to the top of the mountain analyzing challenging samples from crime scenes, the well-marked path takes you the long way. You'll get to the top, but you'll navigate many switchbacks interpreting degraded and inhibited samples. All those extra steps add extra miles to your journey. Eight-dye technology gives you the quick route up. Eight channels means less work to get meaningful results. You'll spend less time hiking out the inhibitors and go straight to the summit.

Summit

A smooth, high-speed path for the whole lab

The story of Mia and David: David has been working at the same paternity lab for a decade, and every year it feels like the traffic gets worse on his commute. The pace is a slow shuffle to and from downtown—unless there is an accident. Likewise, David has been frustrated in the past when the samples he set to run are stalled because of an error that popped up on the instrument, thus blocking the workflow. Mia's goal as a director has been to help David and his team work more efficiently, so the two of them were pleasantly surprised at how little analyst intervention was required with the Spectrum CE System. It has been so quick and easy to get runs started that David has even been able to beat rush hour on the way home!

WorkflowEfficiencies

Reduced Backlogs

Truckload

Eliminate backlogs by the truckload

The extra plate positions give much greater capacity, meaning you can get through the same number of samples with fewer capillary electrophoresis instruments, freeing up lab space and requiring less upkeep.

The freedom to live your life

The story of Maddie: Summer nights used to be filled with concerts in the park and grilling out. The state legislature recently voted to expand sample collection to all arrestees, meaning Maddie had to work longer hours and spend less time with her family. Spectrum CE allowed Maddie to run four plates overnight instead of two and effectively double her productivity. Getting her evenings back was literally music to her ears.

Freedom

Smart Tracking

Barcode

Spend less time importing and tracking samples

Spectrum features automatic recording of plate barcodes and automatic importing of plate map files—making importing sample names a one-click process. There is less opportunity for error with an exact record of the plates analyzed, and easier, faster operation.

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1. The Spectrum drawer opens to reveal 4 plate positions.

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2. Barcoded plate is loaded into base and retainer.

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3. Plate is loaded in an open position (D).

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4. Drawer is closed, the barcode is automatically scanned and the plate map file with a matching barcode is identified. The user only needs to select "Link" to automatically import the map into the run queue.

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5. Once the plate is linked, the run can be started and plate data will include the identifying barcode information.

8-dye Analysis

More information to tame your most challenging samples

The advanced multiplex capabilities of the Spectrum CE System support the next-generation, 8-dye PowerPlex® STR Systems. This powerful combination allows you to amplify and analyze more miniSTR loci per sample than any other commercial kit. Smaller, more numerous loci increases the chance of success with challenging or degraded samples. Labs using the 8-dye systems can also expect more consistent results from variable database and reference samples due to the narrower range of product amplicon sizes.

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Sunken treasure just off shore

When you need to go diving for samples, sometimes sunken treasure is hard to find. Long amplicons may have been washed away. You may even swim right on by an undersea adventure because you don't expect there is anything left to be found. But if you see a sunken ship off the coast of 8-Dye Island, it's worth investigating. With 21 loci at less than 325bp, there's a dramatically higher success rate for degraded samples. You're more likely to see those peaks, and more likely to swim away with the hidden treasure you want.

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2800M Control DNA (1ng) was amplified with the prototype PowerPlex® 35GY 8C System. Amplification products were separated using the Spectrum CE System.

Majority of Autosomal STRs are Less Than 325bp

The PowerPlex® 35GY 8C System allows co-amplification and fluorescent detection of the 20 CODIS Core Loci plus Amelogenin and DYS391 for gender discrimination. Penta D, Penta E and SE33 also are included to increase discrimination and allow searching of databases that contain profiles with these loci.

Additionally, we've designed the layout to allow smaller amplicon sizes for these particularly informative loci: SE33, D21S11 and D2S1338. Ten additional Y-STR loci are included to assist with forensic casework on sexual assault evidence or to enable familial searching, a technique known for its ability to provide investigative leads.

Uncrowded beachfront

When you rent a bungalow on 8-Dye Island, it's a short walk to the beach. With PowerPlex® 35GY 8C System and the most autosomal loci and YSTR loci of any kit, there's just more you can do, whether your samples come in as clean as a spring fed waterfall or covered in sand and grit. You'll get better results either way. With 8 channels instead of 6, the layout is a breeze, with a wide stretch of uncrowded beachfront in front of you. Enjoy the sunsets.

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Equipped with the best gear

When you go for an exploration hike on 8-Dye Island, bringing the right tools with you, such as your trusty Swiss Army knife, makes the hike easier. An IPC better equips you with more information about your sample. That's why next-generation PowerPlex® 8-dye kits include these important controls. If you get deep into the inhibitor jungle, a map will give you clues as to what lies ahead, helping you find your way out.

Detect Inhibitors with an IPC

New in the 8-color PowerPlex® systems is the inclusion of an Internal PCR Control (IPC) to assess the presence of inhibitors, designed to minimize the need to repeat unusable or poor STR analyses which resulted from inhibited DNA. The IPC can provide more information about the sample, allowing you to make better decisions.

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The PowerPlex® 35GY 8C System allows co-amplification and detection of 35 loci, 24 autosomal, and 11 Y-STR loci (represented by lighter shades): CSF1PO, D3S1358, D5S818, D7S820, D8S1179, D13S317, D16S539, D18S51, D21S11, FGA, TH01, TPOX, vWA, D1S1656, D2S441, D2S1338, D10S1248, D12S391, D19S433 and D22S1045, SE33, Penta D, Penta E and Amelogenin; DYS391, DYS385a/b, DYS390, DYS438, DYS448, DYS456, DYS 458, DYS481, DYS635 and DYS643.

Indisputable sighting

The bird watching on 8-Dye Island is second to none. Toucans, parrots, and you might even see a giant ibis or two. But how do you know what you're seeing at such great distances? With the PowerPlex® 35GY 8C System, you'll have the best binoculars around – it has the highest discrimination of any kit. With 35 loci in an 8-color system, it has the lowest probability of adventitious matches. When that giant ibis strolls by on the other side of the valley, you'll know you got the bird.

BirdSighting

Cross Compatibility

Compatibility

Cross-compatibility comes standard

Not ready for 8-colors? Spectrum is designed for use with 4-, 5- and 6-dye commercial STR kits from Promega, Applied Biosystems and Qiagen.

Fast Software

Software that works for you

It's not quite gaming, but it's as close as we could get. We've done our best to design Spectrum system software to make the instrument as easy to use as possible. In addition, Spectrum comes equipped with NDIS-approved GeneMarker®HID analysis software—providing fast, accurate and user-friendly data analysis. The simple "point-and-click" interface and exclusive pattern recognition technology ensures accurate size calling and automated panel calibration with every run.

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Big city amenities with small town convenience

The story of Lucas: Moving to the city meant that Lucas's routines for things like grocery shopping had to change. Likewise, his new job demanded that he quickly get trained on and become proficient with the Spectrum CE System. Lucas soon felt like Spectrum was made just for forensic scientists like him because everything he needed to access for running and analyzing plates was intuitively located in the Spectrum Control Software. It didn't take long for Lucas to adjust to the new city, too, where well-devised urban planning meant he was a short distance from of all of life's essentials.

An Unchanged Workflow

You've got an STR workflow and you don’t want to change it. Neither do we. That’s why we've designed Spectrum CE System to integrate with import and export formats you're already familiar with. Continue using the current sample and data management processes you've implemented.

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Spectrum Control Software

The Spectrum Control Software provides an uncomplicated organization of instrument operations and results. Quick and simple run initiation along with continuous access to the four plate positions during active runs enables flexible management of instrument use. Watch the "Overview" and "Beginning a Run" videos below!

Overview

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Beginning a Run

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Plate Queue

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GeneMarker®HID Software for Spectrum CE System

GeneMarker®HID Software for Spectrum CE System (GMHID-Spectrum) supports data analysis with all commercially available human identity kits. A range of reporting options are available to meet LIMS and report printing needs, and analysis and display options can be easily configured to support your laboratory's workflow. Other benefits include:

  • Database searching, mixture analysis and relationship testing modules

  • Review tools, such as automated contamination checking and project comparison

  • Time savings of at least 25%1

  • Less analyst intervention2

  • Supports Spectrum (.promega) and existing CE data (.fsa and .hid files)

Download GeneMarker® Software information

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Linked Navigation: Simply click on a peak or in the table to highlight data details.

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Multi-Color View: View/comment/edit all dye channels for an allelic ladder or sample on one screen.

GeneMarker®HID Software for Spectrum CE System

GENEMARKERHID-VIDEO01

1. Introduction to the Software

GENEMARKERHID-VIDEO02

2. Importing Raw Data Files

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3. Using the Run Wizard

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4. Introduction to the Main Analysis Window

View More How-to Videos
GENEMARKERHID-VIDEO05

5. Reviewing Electropherograms and Peak Tables

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6. Reviewing Size Standard Calibrations

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7. Using the All Color Browser Window

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8. Using the Panel Editor to Set Analysis Parameters

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9. Using the Positive Control Template Editor

Fashionable Service

Installation, service and support

As you transition to include the Spectrum CE instrument in your lab, we will be with you every step of the way. We offer on-site instrument, software and application training as well as timely on-site installation and service, ensuring minimal interruptions to your lab's operations.

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BestBoss

Room to grow

The story of Aiden: Being the technical lead of a forensics lab requires Aiden to wear many hats. He is an instrument operator, part-time referee and politician. The capacity of the Spectrum CE System allows his analysts to get as much done with one instrument as they could do with two of the competitor's CE instrument. This means Aiden doesn't have to wear the on-call analyst hat as often. Less maintenance means he spends less time on the phone with the service technician. Extra bench space means he doesn't have to stress about planning the lab's future growth. The hat that Aiden wears most often now is "World's Best Boss."

Full Support

Support

Validation and support options

We will work with you to develop customized support tailored to your needs. Options include:

  • Phone-based and on-site consultation

  • On-site bench work according to your requirements

  • Data analyses and summary reports

Everybody gets in on the action

When it comes to vacation, you'd like to bring those most important to you. That's why 8-Dye Island is the best new resort around. With the quality you love and trust, the expanded PowerPlex® family of kits will deliver the results you've come to depend on. And more PowerPlex® kits are on the way to take advantage of everything the island offers. The family might be growing, but on this island nobody gets left behind.

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Meet the Team

Meet the Spectrum support team

Spectrum is brought to you by the efforts of many people, from the customers who told us their needs to the engineers and scientists creating the system and ensuring its performance. We'd like you to meet some of them.

LisaMisner

Lisa Misner
Technical Support and Training Specialist

"My role on the Spectrum project is to develop the training and support documents for both the Spectrum CE System as well as GeneMarker® HID Software for Spectrum."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

My role on the Spectrum project is to develop the training and support documents for both the Spectrum CE System as well as GeneMarker® HID Software for Spectrum. My goal is to provide the appropriate materials to our sales team, technical support team, and, of course, our customers to ensure they are comfortable and confident in their use of the system.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

What's not be excited about?! We're introducing a new CE system to the market… and it has a plate drawer!! Seriously though, every piece of the Spectrum project has involved working with various team members across the organization. I work with a talented group of people who love what they do. That in and of itself is exciting and inspiring. I've really enjoyed being a part of the Spectrum Control Software development team. We've worked hard to make a software that's intuitive and user-friendly, and I'm really excited to start showing it off to our customers!

What's the best thing about your job?

The best part of my job is my interactions with our customers. I've been in the forensic community for over a decade, first as analyst, and now in Promega's Genetic Identity team. There is no other community I'd rather be a part of, and I'm so lucky my role at Promega has allowed me to continue to be a part of it. Part of my job as a member of the Technical Support and Training team is to teach customers how to use our products, but many cases I also learn from our customers. Sometimes it's fitting a product into a particular workflow in a new way and sometimes it's going on a research mission to answer a not-so typical question.

Where would you like to travel that you have never been?

This one's a tough one for me because there are so many places I haven't been to yet. I've been lucky to cross several off my list, but so many more remain. Australia—I have family there that always come to us; I need to reciprocate! Glacier National Park—before the glaciers are gone. Alaska—in the summer (been there in the winter… similar to home, but with mountains and even fewer hours of daylight). I could go on, and on. I'll need to work on that super power (see below) to make all of it happen.

If you could have one super power, what would it be?

I would love to be able to apparate. There are too many places I'd like to go to (see above) and so many hours lost to lines, transit, etc. Of course, I'd have to hide that power from my employer lest they take advantage of it and increase my time away from home.

What is your favorite sport to watch?

Football… more specifically, college football… precisely, the University of Wisconsin—go Badgers!

BrianLeininger

Brian Leininger
Global Service Leader

"My responsibility is to ensure that Promega's support teams have the tools and processes needed to provide customers with the best possible experience in system installation and on-going utilization."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

My responsibility is to ensure that Promega's support teams have the tools and processes needed to provide customers with the best possible experience in system installation and on-going utilization. Minimization of downtime and system optimization are key focus points for our support teams.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I'm thrilled to be working on developing new and improved resources for global customer support in the genetic identity field. It's such a critically important area of work for our customers, and I really look forward to meeting their needs for service and support.

What's your favorite thing about your job?

International travel. The diversity of people and culture is endlessly fascinating, and my career has allowed me to travel in other countries far more than I would ever have been able to do on my own. I feel extremely fortunate to count as friends so many people on so many continents.

What is your favorite sport to watch?

American college football. It's a game of strategy and teamwork, along with the brute strength needed to accomplish team goals. It can be a great metaphor for life and business.

If you could have any one skill or talent you don't already have, what would it be and why?

The ability to learn new languages easily. Language can change the way a person perceives the world, and learning languages is such a great way to learn about the world. But new languages can be so difficult at times, so I wish I had a more natural ability to learn them.

Tony_smaller

Tony Gonzalez
Global Service Specialist

"My primary role is to ensure that our customers are happy with their service."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

My primary role is to ensure that our customers are happy with their service. It is my job to translate engineering and manufacturing information into service manuals, service bulletins, and to build the service training programs.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

Promega is bringing innovation to Genetic Identity Instrumentation. With that being said I am excited about everything Spectrum!

What motivates you to succeed?

Success is a journey, not a destination. ―B. Sweetland
It is my unrelenting curiosity and my overwhelming need to know rather than to merely believe that motivates me to succeed.

Can you play any instruments?

I wish I could.

When you have an hour of free time, what do you like to do?

Run! When my wife told me that we were expecting our first child in 2007, I knew I needed to make a life change. Running has improved my health and helped with controlling my asthma. I am an Ultrarunner at heart, so an hour would only be a warm-up!

JonelleThompson

Jonelle Thompson
Validation Services Manager

"I will be working with customers to get their new Spectrum instrument online."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

I will be working with customers to get their new Spectrum instrument online by helping them with their validation efforts, including on-site bench work, consultation and data analysis.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I am excited to work with customers on the new instrument platform and see how the new features improve the workflow in the laboratory.

Who would you say has had the most influence on your life?

My dad has been the most influential person in my life. He showed me at a very early age the level of dedication and hard work that it takes to achieve your goals in life. At the age of 6 he had me scooping peanuts at his grocery store on days off of school. This taught me the value of work and how to determine what "things" are worth all of the hours you have to put in.

Where do you want to travel to, but have never been?

I have always wanted to travel to a Hawaii to scuba dive, hike waterfalls, and explore such an amazing island.

What is your favorite sport to watch?

I went to Lambeau field to watch the Green Bay Packers for the first time when I was 8 years old. They were losing to the New Orleans Saints at half time, but they made a great comeback in the second half. My sister and I sang "when the saints go marching out" all the way back to the car. I have been hooked ever since.

JonDrobac

Jon Drobac
Global Technical Support & Training Manager

"My role is to ensure that the training and support infrastructure is in place by the time Spectrum is launched."

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How did you come to work at Promega? How long have you been working here?

After completing my Master's Degree in Forensic Science, I accepted a position in the Forensic Biology Section of a local crime laboratory, where I worked on screening evidence for the presence of biological materials and then further characterizing those stains using DNA analysis. After nine and a half years in the crime laboratory, I wanted to expand upon my knowledge and joined Promega as a Technical Support and Training Specialist in the Genetic Identity group. In April of 2013, I became Manager of the Technical Support and Training Group. This month will be my five year anniversary at Promega.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

As the Global Technical Support and Training Manager, my role is to ensure that the training and support infrastructure is in place by the time Spectrum is launched. This, of course, mostly rests on the shoulders of the great teams we have in Madison and across the globe. We aim to continue to provide the best training and support our customers have learned to expect from us and what we've taken pride in.

Are you a Star Wars or Star Trek fan or neither?

A Star Wars fan, I think. Well, if you count making your kids turn off and on lights or open and close doors so you can pretend you have the force a fan, then yes, I'm a Star Wars fan.

If you could have one super power, what would it be?

I think I pretty much answered that already. I would like to have the Force… who wouldn't like to use the Force to grab a beer at will or be able to Jedi mind trick the wife into thinking it's ok to play golf and watch sports all day.

What is your favorite sport to watch?

This is a tough one. I like watching all sports, especially if it's a Chicago team, which makes life very hard living in Madison! If I had to pick one, it would be hockey. I can't think of another sport where you can pick up your teeth, crack your nose back into place, receive 10 stitches, and be out on the ice for the next shift. Go Hawks!!


Meet the Spectrum launch team

SueWigdal

Sue Wigdal
Senior Quality Assurance Scientist

"Our customers inspire me to work harder to make sure we do right by them."

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What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

The people—both the Promega crew and our customers. I love working on cross-functional teams where everyone brings their unique expertise to the table to solve problems and achieve our goals. Although I've only had a few opportunities to talk with our customers about Spectrum, it is so motivating to see their excitement. They inspire me to work harder to make sure we do right by them.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

I am the Quality Assurance Senior Scientist responsible for the consumables associated with Spectrum. This includes everything from the 96-well plates to the cathode buffer troughs. My job is to listen to the team experts and then add my scientific and quality experience to ensure that we deliver products which will meet our customers' needs. This means participating as a team member during the planning and development of the products as well as helping to set meaningful QC specifications to ensure that we make the same high-quality products each and every time.

Describe yourself in three words.

Conscientious. Friendly. Helpful.

What was the last thing you heard or saw which made you laugh out loud?

I am a sucker for any and all science-geek cartoons and jokes. I was recently reminded of a cartoon I saw on the physics department community board in college. It was a very bewildered student looking at a map of the Heisenberg Physics Department. The map said “you are probably here.”

If you could be anything else, what career would you have?

It's not so much a different career that I would want to have, but a talent. I would love to be a creative person. My friends and I go to various art fairs every year. I am constantly amazed by people who can imagine and then create such incredibly diverse and beautiful art.

Katie_smaller

Katie Herbrand
Genetic Identity Supervisor

"Being on the project since the beginning and seeing ideas brought to life as tangible deliverables has been a very fulfilling learning experience."

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What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I'm most excited about the opportunity to work with a large cross-functional team to bring a new CE instrument to market. Being on the project since the beginning and seeing ideas brought to life as tangible deliverables has been a very fulfilling learning experience.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

I'm a Bulk Production representative on the Spectrum project. My tasks revolve around getting part numbers, material specifications and standard operating procedures setup and approved for Spectrum reagents and consumables prior to product launch. I work closely with the other Operations team members to ensure product specifics are in agreement, that orders for input materials are being placed and that we continue "moving" on our tasks in order to meet project timeline milestones.

If you could be anything else, what career would you have?

If time and money were no object, I would be a camp counselor. In 5th grade, I began attending summer camp in East Troy, Wisconsin. I returned year after year and pretty soon I was spending my entire summer as a cabin leader. I have such fond memories of my time there, all of which come flooding back in a cloud of bug spray and a roaring campfire.

Describe yourself in three words.

Organized. Introverted. Dependable.

What was the last thing you heard or saw which made you laugh out loud?

My 15 month old daughter makes me laugh out loud constantly. She's a light-hearted little girl with a soft spot for goldfish crackers, books and Elmo. Sloane is curious about everything and easily amuses herself, like when she squeezes a cherry tomato with all her might and the seeds go everywhere.

MartyEnsenberger

Marty Ensenberger
Senior Research Scientist

"I work on the team that is developing the eight-color STR chemistry for Spectrum."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

I work on the team that is developing the eight-color STR chemistry for Spectrum. It is exciting to be among the first users of the instrument. As we continue to develop and optimize the multiplex, we are also providing feedback to help guide the development of the instrument and its software.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

The people. This project has brought together a group of people who are wonderfully diverse in their expertise and perspectives to launch an instrument, software, and chemistry all purpose-built around the needs of our customers. I have found it incredibly rewarding to be a part of this effort and work with such talented and enthusiastic people. I am especially excited to begin working with our customers as we finalize development!

If you could be anything else, what career would you have?

A bicycle mechanic. A few years ago, friends got me back into biking. I now ride, commute, and race as often as my schedule, and the Wisconsin weather, will allow. For me, riding a bike is uniquely therapeutic. Part of what I find appealing about bikes is their simplicity with advances in materials, fabrication, and design interjecting fun bits of complexity. As a byproduct of riding, I began maintaining and repairing my family's growing stable of bikes. This work has become equally therapeutic and rewarding.

What accomplishment are you most proud of?

My two daughters Abby and Isobel continually amaze and inspire me. My effort to keep up with them helps me stay young at heart. Whether it's coaching their sports teams or helping them with school work, I love watching them learn and grow as they mature into the wonderful young women that I know they will be. I hope they never loose their exuberance and ability to see challenges as opportunities.

Name two songs that would be on the soundtrack of your life.

I chose this question because of the importance of music in my life. My musical tastes are wide-ranging and span most genres (with the exception of the two kinds of music featured at Bob's Country Bunker). Music often has a place in the background of my activities, including lab work. With that in mind, the soundtrack of my life would likely be along and interesting mix of artists. Choosing just two songs proved to be more difficult than I had originally thought but here goes… The first song is "A-Punk" by Vampire Weekend. I chose this song not for the title or lyrics, but because its frenetic pace interrupted briefly by moments of calmness is reminiscent of the cadence of life. Song two is "Doin' it Right" by Daft Punk (feat. Panda Bear). I chose this song because I am a fan of both artists and its repeating lyrics that tell us that if you're "doin' it right everybody will be dancing" is a wonderful reminder to keep life joyous and celebrate success.

AndyJoseph

Andy Joseph
Lead Packaging Engineer

"My role is to design, spec, and manufacture the Spectrum consumable packaging."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

My role is to design, spec, and manufacture the Spectrum consumable packaging. This includes the injection molded buffer troughs, shelf cartons, and the crate the instrument will be shipped to customers in.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I enjoy being able to work on a team that I can use past experience to aid the development process. Spectrum has also provided me with an opportunity to learn about chemistry side of our products which is outside of my normal job scope.

Where do you want to travel to, but have never been?

Venice—I've always been fascinated with the canals and architecture I've seen in video and pictures.

Describe your "perfect" day.

A perfect day for me would start with a bike ride in the morning followed by 18 holes on The Old Course at St. Andrews.

Kristina Pearson

Kristina Pearson
Operations Lead

"I oversee operations tasks including purchasing, packaging engineering, product quality and manufacturing."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

For the Spectrum project, I am the Madison Operations Lead overseeing Operations tasks. I work closely with Brian Hayman who is the overall Project Manager for the project.

On the Operations side, we have a fun team of people consisting of Purchasing, Packaging Engineering, Product Quality and Manufacturing that meet regularly to keep our tasks aligned with the overall project timeline.

This involves:
  • Overseeing the molding process for our new Spectrum consumables such as the Anode and Cathode containers
  • Implementing our filling and sealing processes
  • Determining QC testing for consumables and reagents that will be used on the instrument
  • Creating labels and shelf cartons for the new reagents

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I have really enjoyed the cross-functional teams that have assembled to work on this project. Everyone is so enthusiastic and completely dedicated to creating the best solution for our customers. I have built new relationships with Promega staff that I have not worked with prior to this project.

I love the idea of bringing something novel to our customers. I hope that everyone will appreciate the pride and care we are putting into every aspect of development.

Where do you want to travel to, but have never been?

My husband and I would love to travel to Alaska. The beauty and the serenity of the landscape is very appealing to me. The idea of traveling in pristine, untouched nature is a lifelong goal. Alaska has everything from snow to oceans from freshwater to saltwater from sunburn to frostbite. Everything in Alaska is built tough. I would love to experience it firsthand.

If you could have one super power, what would it be?

I am not sure if this is a super power, but I would love to be able to touch other living beings and see what they see or have seen. For example, when I am hiking, I would love to be able to touch a tree and see what changes the tree has stood witness to over the course of its lifetime.

Also, we recently adopted an 8 year old cat. She is afraid of fast movements but comes running right to us whenever you make a loud noise. She really does not like women but seems to love every man that walks into our house. I would love to be able to pet her and understand why she does some of the things she does.

What was the last thing you heard or saw which made you laugh out loud?

I had a birthday recently. One of my presents from my family was at "Crazy Cat Lady" coloring book. Those close to me know that my long-term life plan is to become a Crazy Cat Lady. The coloring book came with a quiz to confirm my status as a cat lady. Of course, I passed with flying colors. Meow!

Brian Hayman

Brian Hayman
Program Manager

"I get to interface with all of the different company functions to initiate, plan, coordinate and report on all the detailed work that goes into developing the product."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

As Program Manager I get to interface with all of the different company functions to initiate, plan, coordinate and report on all the detailed work that goes into developing the product. It's both challenging and fun to understand and keep track of the variety of people and tasks associated with a complex instrument like Spectrum.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

The people! We have a fantastic group of professionals developing this product. Their experience, depth of knowledge, and commitment are evident in everything they do. We learn from each other and laugh a lot – a truly "high functioning" team that I am blessed to be a part of. It is rare to have the opportunity to develop an instrument from scratch; I know the whole team realizes that and the opportunity we've been entrusted with.

Why did you choose your profession?

I think it kind of found me! As a young (electrical) engineer, I was asked to do some planning and coordination of a small project that I was also designing circuits for. I discovered that, while circuit design is interesting, the circuit doesn't meet you for lunch or buy you a beer after work. I found that I enjoyed the variety and people aspects of project management, and so it stuck. I think people gravitate towards what they're good at, and I'm a much better project manager than circuit designer. I'm sure my former electrical engineer colleagues would agree!

Describe your "perfect" day.

My perfect day would incorporate some physical activity, like hiking, backpacking, cycling or running. It would include some great food in an amazing location – say, a mountain top. It would include conversation and hang out time with interesting people…watching the sun set over those mountains. And to be a perfect day, those interesting people would have to be the ones who are closest to me – my wife, two daughters and their husbands. And plenty of sleep! (that doesn't always happen…)

If you could describe yourself in 3 words, what would they be?

"Work in progress". I try not to take myself too seriously! I love to learn and I'm always humbled by how much there is to know.

Poncho Meisenheimer

Poncho Meisenheimer
Director, Chemistry Research

"I coordinate a powerful group of problem-solving chemists in research, development, and analytics."

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What's your favorite thing about your job?

A molecule's structure and synthesis are often described using artistic expressions like beautiful and elegant. Like most chemists, I love to create molecules that are more beautiful than anyone expected and more useful than anyone imagined.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

Fluorescent dyes bridge a gap between human genetics and the Spectrum CE instrument. Our chemistry teams were charged with two missions:

  1. To create a quiver of rock stable dye molecules that blend the needs of oligo synthesis and enzymology with the precision of spectral deconvolution.
  2. To create the polymers and formulations consistent with customer expectations in capillary electrophoresis.

I was lucky enough to coordinate this powerful group of problem-solving chemists in research, development, and analytics.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

To me, the most exciting aspect of the Spectrum project is in the dynamics of invention in a large group. Every clever innovation causes a constructive ripple effect across the diverse scientific groups. Few things cause a pleasant release of human neurotransmitters like watching a colleague communicate a critical path victory in a time-sensitive project. The deep human connection strengthens the value of every scientific solution.

Describe your "perfect" day.

I'm lucky to have had many perfect days. Surfing small waves in the sun, for example, with my family and friends, everyone in the moment and everyone with a grin.

If you could describe yourself in 3 words, what would they be?

Fun loving, low maintenance, and excited.

Doug Storts

Doug Storts
Head of Research

"My team is responsible for developing the new eight-color STR genotyping systems."

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What's the best thing about your job?

I get to work with incredibly talented individuals dedicated to developing new products that address unmet customer needs. It is incredibly rewarding to know the work we do has a significant impact on people's lives.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

My team is responsible for developing the new eight-color STR genotyping systems. We work closely with the organic chemists at our facility in San Luis Obispo, California and here in Madison, Wisconsin to develop new fluorescent dye-labeled oligonucleotides and the separation polymer/buffers. In addition, we work closely with the hardware and software engineers at our Sunnyvale, California facility to ensure the final product (instrument, reagents and software) will meet customer needs.

Team Bonding

"I have a special bond with my team and can really feel the love"

(No R&D personnel were hurt in this photo shoot)

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I am excited that we have the opportunity to advance the state-of-the-art for STR genotyping. Because we are no longer restricted to six colors we can include more loci, and/or make the most informative loci a smaller size.

What motivates you to succeed?

Two things - I hate to lose and I have a passion for developing products that have a significant impact in the community

How did you come to work at Promega? How long have you been working here?

After completing my post-doctoral work at the University of Chicago, I joined a small start-up biotechnology company. After two years, I decided to seek a position in a more established company. I contacted a recruiter and within a short period of time was invited to interview for a Group Leader position at Promega. I have been at Promega for 25 years.

Andrea-Chow

Andrea Chow
Sr. Director Integrated Engineering

"I coordinate the engineering team to create the overall instrument concept, and I collaborate with the full project team to ensure that the instrument architecture works well with consumables and chemistry kits to meet all requirements."

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Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

My role is a lot like being a parent, sometimes an advisor, sometimes a cheerleader, sometimes a laborer, and once in a while even a dictator, but most of the time a proud witness of the creation of a delightful entity.

I coordinate the engineering team – hardware, software, and firmware – to create the overall instrument concept, and collaborate with the full project team to ensure that the instrument architecture works well with consumables and chemistry kits to meet all requirements.

What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I am most excited about the challenge and reward of working with a diverse and passionate team of scientists, engineers and genetic identity experts to develop a complete solution that potentially enhances the productivity of the end users. The process of bringing innovative solutions to broaden spectral capability and increase workflow flexibility of the Spectrum CE System is a lot of fun because of the great team dynamics.

Describe your perfect day.

My perfect day definitely involves having family and/or friends around sharing good food and a lot of laughs. It can be anywhere, any season, and any meal; it is who I am with that makes a day perfect.

If you could describe yourself in 3 words, what would they be?

Curious, optimistic, collaborative. I wanted to say “gorgeous, charismatic and brilliant” but that would be a complete lie!

What was the last thing you heard or saw which made you laugh out loud?

Tina Fey playing Sarah Palin on SNL – again! Can't we just be done with that skit??

Yaron Kidron

Yaron Kidron
Principal Software Engineer

"I've helped create the Spectrum Control Software with a user interface simple enough for anyone to learn and powerful enough for customized runs."

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What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

Spectrum is a fascinating project—it is Promega's first venture into genetic identity instrumentation; and we have built it from scratch. Our team has proven itself above and beyond in learning, designing, refining, and making Spectrum a reality. We believe we have a product that is not only a tremendous win for Promega, but for the entire GI world.

If you could be anything else, what career would you have?

I'd be probably be involved with photography, most likely in the environmental field. I like capturing the essence of a place or a moment in a photograph, if only to replay and enjoy it later.

Yosemite Valley, January 2016

(Yosemite Valley, January 2016)

When you have an hour of free time, what do you like to do?

I'm an avid motorcyclist and have travelled across most of America on my trusty super-sports. Luckily, California offers a 12 month riding season for us to enjoy. Ride on!

Arches National Park, June 2014

(Arches National Park, June 2014)

If you could have any one skill or talent you don't already have, what would it be and why?

Skiing. I know, you might think that's easy to accomplish, but growing up in a desert country, snow wasn't much of a frequent treat. Add to that an overly protecting Jewish mother, and you might understand why downhill slalom wasn't a big part of my childhood.


Meet the Aarons

Aaron Mertzenich

Aaron Wardell
Production Artist

"I work as an illustrator on the Spectrum project. I collaborated with the designer on concepting each installment of the Spectrum series and built the digital illustrations."

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What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

I enjoyed the deep focus work of creating the Spectrum illustrations (Spectrum World, CapaCity and 8-Dye Island). Living in the world of those illustrations and then seeing them integrated into collateral by the rest of the team was fun. I'm excited about working on new installments in the Spectrum series.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

I work as an illustrator on the Spectrum project. I collaborate with the designer on concepting each installment of the Spectrum series and build the digital illustrations.

What's your favorite thing about your job?

The unique and progressive corporate culture at Promega.

Are you a Star Wars or Star Trek fan or neither?

Star Wars.

Where do you want to travel to, but have never been?

Spain. Every person I've ever met who has been to Spain says the culture/scenery combo is uniquely overwhelming. I think they mean in a good way. Either way, it makes me curious.

Aaron Mertzenich

Aaron Mertzenich
Web UX Designer/Developer

"The Spectrum project has given us the opportunity to explore a more creative side to our marketing."

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What are you most excited about working on for Spectrum?

The Spectrum project has given me the opportunity to explore a more creative side to our marketing that’s different from a lot of what I've traditionally done in the past on the website. I love being able to add a new level of interactivity and storytelling to the site, especially when it comes to the subtle animations sprinkled throughout the page.

Tell us a little bit about what your role is on the Spectrum project.

As a front-end developer, I worked with our graphic designers to build the interactive experience you see at the top of this page and wrote the code that powers it. My work on this project also helped to spark improvements to other sections of the Promega website by adding a greater level of modularity to the JavaScript source code, encouraging reuse elsewhere on the site.

If you could have one super power, what would it be?

Teleportation… but only if I'm able to take objects and/or people along with me. See the world, be anywhere in an instant, and never wait for traffic again.

What motivates you to succeed?

There's always a way to improve on what you already have. That's one of the reasons I like web development so much; the landscape is constantly evolving, providing new things to learn every day.

Name two songs that would be on the soundtrack of your life.

Tchaikovsky's final three symphonies are truly masterful works, and I hold his Symphony No. IV in F minor particularly close to my heart due to its impact on me during my formative years as a young musician (I'm a violist). The work showcases Tchaikovsky’s skill as an orchestrator, and I love the brass section's "fate" theme that recurs throughout the piece.

Sibelius's Symphony No. 2 in D major is a close second, especially the final two movements. The first movement introduces its main three-note motif in fragments, which eventually combine to form the powerful melody of the final movement. It gets a little wandering at times, but helps remind me that given enough persistence everything comes together in the end.

Choose your country

Americas

Brazil
Brazil
Canada
Canada
United States
United States

Pacific Asia

Australia
Australia
India
India
Japan
Japan
Korea, Republic of
Korea, Republic of
Singapore
Singapore

Europe

Austria
Austria
Belgium
Belgium
Denmark
Denmark
Estonia
Estonia
Finland
Finland
France
France
Germany
Germany
Iceland
Iceland
Italy
Italy
Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Netherlands
Netherlands
Norway
Norway
Poland
Poland
Spain
Spain
Sweden
Sweden
Switzerland
Switzerland
United Kingdom
United Kingdom