Transcriptomic assays

Historically the vast majority of genome wide expression analysis data have been obtained through microarray experiments.  VIB Nucleomics Core has a long standing experience of more than 10 years in this field. Currently we are running over 2,000 arrays (Affymetrix and Agilent) a year.

Classically, microarray gene expression experiments result in a list of genes that are up or down regulated in a particular experimental setting and often require the validation of this altered gene expression in a second independent data set, preferably using an alternative technology. VIB Nucleomics Core is the first Nanostring Certified service provider in Europe for nCounter® technology, allowing for the analysis of the expression level of hundreds of genes in parallel in a large number of samples. In a special application, expression levels of all known human, mouse, or rat miRNAs can be analyzed in a single reaction per sample. Combining mRNA and miRNA profiling in one single assay is now also possible with this nCounter® technology (miRGE assays).

In the past few years, novel sequencing technologies have emerged that enable the analysis of millions of molecules in parallel. With this increase in sequencing throughput and associated drop in per base sequencing cost, expression analysis by Massive Parallel Sequencing (MPS) is now coming into reach. With currently available MPS technologies, RNA needs to be converted into DNA, but direct RNA sequencing technologies are well under way; needless to mention that the VIB Nucleomics Core is closely monitoring these developments. Apart from quantitative information on expression levels, RNA sequencing also enables mutation and structural variation analysis (e.g., novel fusion transcripts and alternative splicing), not only of the coding RNA, but also of the different classes of non-coding RNA, such as miRNA (microRNA) and lincRNA (long interfering non-coding RNA).

Platforms offered: