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PCR (polymerase chain reaction) alternatives will drive NAT (Nucleic Acid Testing) growth to 2006

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

Most new products arriving on the Nucleic Acid Testing (NAT) market do not utilise the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Instead, they make use of isothermal amplification technologies to achieve the high sensitivities often required for applications such as infectious disease testing. Unlike the currently dominant PCR technique, these new methods no longer require thermal cycling. This means that instrumentation and assay protocols can be greatly simplified. Other products set to impact the market over the next few years use technologies which amplify the test signal, and not the target nucleic acid as PCR does. By amplifying the assay label, many problems associated with sample contamination and carryover can be reduced or eliminated. In addition, other products are incorporating novel methods for increasing assay sensitivity that do not require nucleic acid amplification at all.

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