Roche and RainDance Technologies Join Forces in Targeted Sequencing to Advance ADME Research

Branford, CT and Lexington, MA, USA, 07. März 2011

Collaboration to enable scientists to capture known and unknown functional mutations associated with core set of pharmacokinetic and pharmacology genes

RainDance Technologies, Inc., and 454 Life Sciences, a Roche Company, today announced collaboration for the development and commercialization of a targeted next-generation sequencing (NGS) solution for simple and cost-effective investigation of drug absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME). As part of the collaboration, RainDance and 454 Life Sciences plan to commercially launch a core ADME gene screening research panel that will address one of the large unmet research needs in academic, pharmaceutical and biotechnology markets. The panel will be made available on both the 454 Life Sciences’ GS Junior and GS FLX Systems. The announcement was made in conjunction with the Society of Toxicology’s 50th Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.  Financial terms of the collaboration were not disclosed.

Adverse drug events represent more than two million hospitalizations and approximately $1 billion in healthcare cost burden annually in the United States. More effective early warning indicators of drug metabolism and molecular pharmacology hold the potential to reduce more than 50 percent of hospitalizations associated with adverse drug events, simplify optimization of drug dosing, and enable the prediction of responders and non-responders.

Current ADME research products are primarily limited to genotyping common alleles, and therefore lack the sensitivity, breadth of genomic coverage and ability to identify previously unknown variants that are important to drive scientific discovery and routine use. The RainDance and 454 Life Sciences collaboration will enable researchers to interrogate a set of core pharmacokinetic and pharmacology genes, while at the same time to detect known and unknown functional mutations associated with drug metabolism and response.

“For the first time, researchers can look beyond the mutations found on current genotyping panels and discover novel chromosomal changes and rare mutations associated with drug metabolism and adverse drug events,” said Roopom Banerjee, President and CEO of RainDance Technologies. “Through our collaboration, Rain Dance and 454 Life Sciences are combining the power of our microdroplet technology with 454 Life Sciences’ proven next-generation sequencing platforms to provide a robust and economical ADME sequencing solution.”

RainDance’s proprietary primer design method enables highly accurate, consistent, and reproducible next-generation sequencing in ADME research, which is required for large-scale drug metabolism studies. 454 Life Sciences’ GS Junior and GS FLX Systems provide high-quality, long sequencing reads which enable higher levels of coverage, accuracy and quantitation with fewer dropouts, as well as detection of a wide range of genomic variations, including SNPs, insertions, deletions, and multinucleotide polymorphisms.

“Our collaboration with RainDance will result in solutions that better equip scientists to leverage the GS FLX and GS Junior Systems to effectively predict and understand drug activity early in the drug development process,” explained Christopher McLeod, President and CEO of 454 Life Sciences. “We are pleased to be working with RainDance on the development of this powerful core ADME panel that provides a simple, cost-effective targeted sequencing solution to pharmaceutical, biotechnology and research customers.”  

For more information on 454 Sequencing Systems, visit For more information on the RainDance microdroplet-based platform, visit

About Roche

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is a leader in research-focused healthcare with combined strengths in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. Roche is the world’s largest biotech company with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, virology, inflammation, metabolism and CNS. Roche is also the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics, tissue-based cancer diagnostics and a pioneer in diabetes management. Roche’s personalised healthcare strategy aims at providing medicines and diagnostic tools that enable tangible improvements in the health, quality of life and survival of patients. In 2010, Roche had over 80’000 employees worldwide and invested over 9 billion Swiss francs in R&D. The Group posted sales of 47.5 billion Swiss francs. Genentech, United States, is a wholly owned member of the Roche Group. Roche has a majority stake in Chugai Pharmaceutical, Japan. For more information:

About RainDance Technologies, Inc.

RainDance Technologies is pioneering the use of high-throughput microdroplet-based analysis in human health and life science research. The company's core RainStorm technology generates millions of discrete droplets that can encapsulate a single molecule, cell or reaction and be digitally analyzed and sorted one at a time.  The power, simplicity, precision and elegance of microdroplets enable researchers to answer complex questions with unprecedented sensitivity and quantification. The complete RainDance Technologies solution includes automated instrumentation, customizable bioinformatics and high-value consumables and reagents for applications including targeted next-generation DNA sequencing, methylation, digital PCR and single cell analysis. Based in Lexington, Massachusetts, the company supports scientists around the world through its international sales and support operations and a global network of distributors and service providers. For more information, please visit

For life science research only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures.

RainDance Technologies and RainStorm are trademarks of RainDance Technologies, Inc.
454, 454 LIFE SCIENCES, 454 SEQUENCING, GS FLX and GS JUNIOR are trademarks of Roche.
Other brands or product names are trademarks of their respective holders.