DNAS Receives NIH Grant to Develop Advanced PCR Software

Ann Arbor, Mich. – April 2, 2002 — The National Institute of Health (NIH) has awarded DNA Software a Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR) Phase I Grant to enhance its existing Oligonucleotide Modeling Platform™ (OMP™) to enable automated high-throughput design of PCR (polymerase chain reaction) primers for amplification of a single target and a simplified multiplex format. The developed software will include the ability to optimize reaction conditions in silico and utilize a rigorous equilibrium model for hybridization which will be used to predict the product distribution after each step of PCR.

“This is the company’s first federally funded grant,” according to Mark Kielb, company president, “and we are very excited at the opportunity to apply our detailed knowledge of DNA thermodynamics to the next generation of PCR assays.”

According to Svetlana Morosyuk, DNA Software senior scientist and the grant’s principal investigator, “Single target PCR is very robust and works about 95% of the time. However, reliability drops for more difficult PCR reactions, such as the multiplex format, difficult templates, and high-throughput applications.” DNA Software outlined three specific aims for the grant:

  • Develop a graphical user interface specific for PCR design including
  • Extend the functionality of OMP for single target and multiplex PCR primer design.
  • Perform validation experiments for OMP™ predictions.

The company expects to complete work on Phase I by the end of the summer 2002.

About DNA Software, Inc.
DNA Software, Inc. combines science and software to enable industrial genomics through advances in technologies based on nucleic acids. The company’s first software platform, OMP™ (Oligonucleotide Modeling Platform™) models in silico the folding and hybridization of single-stranded nucleic acids with great accuracy. The company combines OMP™ with scientific consulting, custom software development, and custom laboratory research to deliver state-of-the-art support for designing and developing of nucleic acid based technologies.