Design uniquely specific and sensitive PCR assays for viruses such as COVID-19, H1N1, Zika and more.

DNA Software provides best-in-class software for designing consensus PCR assays with high sensitivity and specificity for both virus and bacterial pathogens with our PanelPlex™-Consensus program.

SARS-CoV-2 also known as  2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) pandemic has recently been a concern all over the globe. With the spread of the COVID-19 disease, scientists are looking for ways to instantly diagnose the virus with rapid testing technologies. Building an assay that works can be vital in speeding up the process of diagnosis and controlling the spread of the virus.

Click here to Download the paper from the “Stakeholders Panel on Agent Detection Assays” (SPADA) with best-practices for designing PCR assays for pathogens such as SARS-CoV-2.

Why can PanelPlex™-Consensus help build uniquely sensitive and specific PCR assays to detect SARS-CoV-2 (Coronavirus), including all variants?

  • PanelPlex™-Consensus has been rigorously validated for the detection of thousands of bacteria, viruses and human targets.
  • PanelPlex™-Consensus provides consensus designs PCR assays to detect all sequence variants of a given virus. Often, this is accomplished with a single primer pair (i.e. singleplex reaction) while in other cases with high sequence diversity a small multiplex reaction is required (typically 1 to 5 plex is required).  For example, we have made singleplex assays for pandemic 2009 H1N1 FluA, and 7-plex assay for the highly divergent Lassa virus.  PanelPlex™-Consensus is fully capable of designing a new assay to address the (COVID-19) Coronavirus.
  • PanelPlex™-Consensus allows the user to input panels of GenBank accessions to form inclusivity, exclusivity (i.e. phylogenetically near neighbor sequences), and background lists.
  • PanelPlex™-Consensus uses our proprietary ThermoBLAST and TargAn (target analysis) algorithms so that the assays are designed with maximum coverage of sequence variants with minimum false positives and false negatives.
  • PanelPlex™-Consensus saves over six months on average of iterative experimental trial-and-error optimization.
  PanelPlexTM-Consensus Traditional Design
First pass of multiplex primer design 80-90% >50% *
Second pass of multiplex primer design 98-99% <70%
Time to functional design <2 days >6 months

* Based on personal communication with PCR specialist at Roche and Sr. Scientist at a Boston based Biotech company


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Dna Software provides its customers direct access to its software solutions as well as performing custom assay designs on a contact basis.
Panelplex-Consensus as been recognized as in 2019 by Frost and Sullivan as best in class in the industry.