(ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Aug. 28, 2018 ) Swift Biosciences today announced early access availability of its Swift Amplicon HS Panels, a new, high-sensitivity targeted amplicon library preparation kit for next-generation sequencing (NGS) of liquid biopsy samples, including cell-free DNA (cfDNA). This addition to Swift’s targeted NGS portfolio facilitates the detection and validation of mutations occurring at 0.25-3.0% frequency among a background or host sample. This capability is especially useful for oncology and newborn screening applications, where rare variant profiles from limited DNA quantities constitute useful signatures of health status.
The first kit featuring the Swift Amplicon HS workflow is Swift’s popular EGFR Pathway Panel, a focused cfDNA panel covering clinically relevant oncology hotspots including EGFR T790, KRAS G12/G13, NRAS Q61 and BRAF V600. Swift is also building custom panels and plans to release a Sample_ID panel for fetal/maternal tracing with the same sensitivity and specificity capabilities.
“Swift Amplicon HS represents an enabling tool for liquid biopsy and cell-free DNA applications, particularly with the many challenges associated with cfDNA templates and NGS-related errors that confound the detection of low frequency variants,” said Drew McUsic, PhD, Swift’s Amplicon product manager. “This kit is for translational labs who asked us for more confident variant calling at 1% frequency and below from cfDNA and also wanted the improved accuracy and reliability of the Illumina sequencing platform.”
Nucleotide errors introduced during PCR and sequencing are removed through the implementation of unique molecular identifiers (MIDs or UMIs)—short barcodes that uniquely label target templates during amplification. Upon analysis, library molecules sharing the same unique identifiers are consolidated into consensus families, allowing for distinction between true positive variants versus those that were the result of assay artifacts. Swift offers cost-effective access to library generation with amplicons leveraging these MIDs.
Key features and benefits of the Swift Amplicon HS Panels include:
- Sensitive and specific, leveraging Unique Molecular Identifiers (MIDs or UMIs remove noise and enable robust detection of SNVs and indels down to 0.25% allele frequency)
- Compatibility to amplify and interrogate mutations from as little as 10 ng of cfDNA
- A fast workflow that converts DNA to Illumina® libraries in less than three hours
- Paired data analysis tools through cloud-based Genialis platform or open-source scripts