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GEN News Highlights : Nov 9, 2012

More Funds for Epigenetic Research

New England Biolabs (NEB) recently received a $640,000 Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to expand its research and product development of enzymatic tools for epigenetic analysis.

New England Biolabs (NEB) recently received a $640,000 Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to expand its research and product development of enzymatic tools for epigenetic analysis. This latest grant adds to the more than $1.1 million of SBIR funds awarded for this research since 2009.

In 2010, NEB scientists identified the MspJI family of restriction enzymes, which has the ability to excise small fragments of methylated DNA for use in epigenetics studies. According to NEB, this latest SBIR grant award will enable further research in this area and a better understanding of epigenetic marks in the mammalian genome.

"Since its founding, NEB has coupled its basic research with the development of new tools for molecular biology," states Bill Jack, Ph.D., director of research at NEB. "The repository of knowledge, generated during the almost four decades of restriction endonuclease study at NEB, has fueled a discovery program that has radically expanded the utility of restriction endonucleases and activity on a variety of DNA templates, including those created by epigenetic modification. We are committed to continuing this discovery process, and to use these novel new enzymes to uncover the role of epigenetic modification during development, differentiation and disease."

NEB’s focus is on the discovery and development of reagents for the life sciences industry. It offers a selection of recombinant and native enzymes for genomic research and is expanding its product offerings into areas related to proteomics and drug discovery.