Affymetrix, Inc. (NASDAQ: AFFX) today announced a research and service collaboration with the Centre for Proteomic and Genomic Research (CPGR) in South Africa. CPGR will provide gene expression and Axiom genotyping services to African researchers using GeneTitan® Multi-Channel (MC) Instrument. The Affymetrix and CPGR partnership aims to enable high-throughput genomics research and personalized medicine projects across Africa.
The CPGR is a nonprofit organization funded by the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA), which is based on an initiative by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) whose goal is to develop the bio-economy in South Africa. According to Dr Reinhard Hiller, Managing Director of the CPGR, “The high throughput capability of GeneTitan ® MC Instrument combined with customizable Axiom® Genotyping Arrays is ideal for meeting the needs of scientists in Africa whose research projects range from small pilot to large-scale discovery to focused validation studies. GeneTitan ® MC Instrument expands our genomics service capabilities and will further enable CPGR to support cutting-edge translational research in Africa. Further, it allows discovery and validation of disease-related biomarkers economically – even when searching for very rare genetic variants. We expect to progress personalized medicine studies that aim to discover genetic markers specific in the African population for better diagnosis and drug treatment.”
It is a well-known fact that genetic variability of African populations is far greater than in other regions in the world. This is particularly important when considering that African populations are underrepresented in most studies on hereditary diseases and pharmacogenomics. Applying these types of genomic discoveries to clinical practices has the potential to change health and wellness of African populations.
“We are excited to partner with CPGR and see this as a significant opportunity to ensure that African populations are represented in genomics research studies leading to personalized therapies. Affymetrix is leading the way in population optimized genotyping analysis and was the first to create a genotyping array with content derived specifically from African populations,” said Chris Barbazette, VP of Commercial Operations, International Markets at Affymetrix.