Category Archives: Uncategorized

BioLegend partners on TotalSeqTM antibodies to boost single cell surface protein profiling within VIB

BioLegend, a world-class antibody provider, announced today a new partnership with VIB, a leading life science research institute in Flanders (Belgium), to evaluate and implement the TotalSeqTM antibodies for next-generation multi-omics by the combining single cell transcriptomics with single cell proteomics profiling (removal of by the combining single cell transcriptomics).

Early this year, an exclusive license agreement was announced between BioLegend and the New York Genome Center to commercialize CITE-seq under BioLegend’s brand name TotalSeqTM. The first product in the brand portfolio, TotalSeqTMA, was the first to provide a commercially available source for CITE-seq antibodies to enable simultaneous surface protein profiling and RNA-seq at the single cell level. BioLegend’s more recent collaboration with 10x Genomics further extends the TotalSeqTM portfolio with TotalSeqTMB and TotalSeqTMC products, which provide more complete reagent kits that are fully compatible with 10x Genomics’ ChromiumTM Solutions and new Feature Barcoding technology, recently launched at the ASHG 68th Annual Meeting in San Diego.

Today, BioLegend and VIB are proud to announce their collaboration on the TotalSeqTM antibody libraries. “BioLegend is thrilled to be working with VIB to provide our integrated TotalSeqTM proteogenomics solutions as a standardized tool for researchers across labs and disciplines throughout the VIB network.” stated Gene Lay, CEO at BioLegend.

The VIB research institute is at the forefront of the single cell field characterizing pathologies at the highest resolution. Multiple VIB groups will highly benefit from this extremely powerful technology. Martin Guilliams and Charlotte Scott, VIB-UGent Center for Inflammation Research comment that, “One of the main rate-limiting steps of our research, was screening for surface proteins. BioLegend proposes a TotalSeqTM solution that permits to test the expression of hundreds of surface proteins simultaneously in parallel with single-cell RNA-Sequencing. These TotalSeqTM antibodies will now be used in our efforts to map the different myeloid cells for the Human Cell Atlas project.” The TotalSeqTM antibodies will also have a significant impact in the cancer field, states Diether Lambrechts, director of the VIB-KU Leuven Center for Cancer Biology who “plans to apply CITE-seq to examine individual tumor cells and the cells that infiltrate the tumor such as T-cells and other immune cells in tumor biopsies, to deeply characterize tumors and their microenvironment for the development of new immunotherapeutic approaches.” Jo Van Ginderachter, VIB Center for Inflammation Research at VUB, adds that in the brain research field “TotalSeqTM antibodies will generate unprecedented insight in the molecular make-up of single cells present within the steady-state and diseased brain, allowing the identification and characterization of functionally important cell types and activation states.” Bart Lambrecht, director of VIB-UGent Center for Inflammation Research, is “very excited to be able to push the boundaries of flow cytometry panel design to tackle fundamental problems in asthma in an unbiased manner using TotalSeqTM antibodies.” Finally, Yvan Saeys and Niels Vandamme, VIB-UGent Center for Inflammation Research, add to this that “The new TotalSeqTM antibodies provide also novel opportunities for research in computational biology, paving the way towards single-cell multi-omics data integration.”

Boosting the VIB research in the single cell field is also one of the key goals of the newly established Single Cell Accelerator (SCA) program at the institute. This program aims to expand VIB’s expertise in single cell research by optimizing, validating and developing novel and recently commercialized platforms within VIB’s Technology Innovation Lab. Over the coming months, VIB will work towards setting up established CITE-seq protocols for this technology on a broad range of different sample types. “We believe that single cell protein profiling can revolutionize the single cell field and we want to boost the uptake of this technology at VIB. For this, we are pleased to be closely collaborating with BioLegend on their TotalSeqTM antibody libraries”, states Silvie Van den Hoecke, Life Science Technology Specialist at VIB.

 ​​​​​​​

 

Akoya Biosciences and VIB partner to explore multiplexed spatial analysis of single cells using the CO-Detection by indexing technology

Akoya Biosciences, a private biotech start-up, announced that VIB will be one of its first partners for exploring the CODEXTM (CO-Detection by indexing) technology in Europe.

The CODEXTM technology originates from Dr. Garry Nolan’s lab at Stanford University and is the only technology available to provide spatial and quantitative analysis of up to 50 biomarkers of individual cells in complex tissues. This technology will undoubtedly accelerate VIB’s ongoing effort in single cell immunology, neurology and oncology research by unravelling the spatial interactions of single cells for the very first time using a multiplex imaging tool.Characterizing the interaction of single cells and their corresponding microenvironments is of major interest to VIB and is also one of the key goals of the newly established Single Cell Accelerator (SCA) program at the institute. This program aims to expand VIB’s expertise in single cell research by optimizing, validating and developing novel and recently commercialized platforms within VIB’s Technology Innovation Lab. The CODEXTMis the first imaging platform to enter the SCA and Brian McKelligon, CEO of Akoya Biosciences, further complements “VIB is one of the leading research institutes in single cell research, and as such, we are thrilled and honored to partner with them in their SCA program by bringing the CODEXTM Technology to Europe.”The CODEXTM platform transforms traditional fluorescent microscopes into powerful high-dimensional tissue imaging stations that can analyse the tissue architecture and heterogeneity through multiplex staining. Dr. Saskia Lippens, Manager at the VIB Bioimaging Core confirms “this platform is clearly the next step and the long-sought missing link in single cell research and imaging”. Prof. Martin Guilliams, group leader at VIB – UGent Center for Inflammation Research and member of the Human Cell Atlas Initiative agrees and further adds “There is no ‘atlas’ without a map, thus the ability to accurately map distinct subsets of single cells in tissues such as the liver will certainly drive the Human Cell Atlas forward!” The possibility to detect up to 50 protein markers in a single tissue section opens new research avenues, Prof. Diether Lambrechts, group leader and director of VIB – KU Leuven Center for Cancer Biology expects that this platform will continue to advance single cell research in cancer biology and adds “the complexity of the tumour microenvironment has so far been underrepresented due to the lack of adequate research tools, with the help of the CODEXTM platform we aim to further dissect and unravel the role of the microenvironment in tumor progression and development.” Prof. Adrian Liston, group leader at VIB – KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease research, enthusiastically agrees “the CODEXTM is a unique multiplex imaging platform and we expect this technology to bolster our understanding in immune diseases at a level never achieved before.”

The collaboration between VIB and Akoya Biosciences began last year when Dr. Wai Long Tam, who is part of the Technology Innovation Lab at the institute, visited the company in Menlo Park for on-site training. He notes that “the integration and rollout of this platform has been a great success; multiple groups are now plugging in and can’t wait to integrate this technology in their research pipelines.” Dr. Halina Novak, Technology and Innovation Manager at VIB, confirms and feels privileged to have the CODEXTM installed at the institute. She comments “despite the physical distance between VIB and Akoya Biosciences, the interaction and support has so far been exceptional, and I am looking forward to expand this collaboration. We expect the CODEXTM platform to bring novel insights into both normal biological or diseases processes, with the aim to ultimately decipher novel biological questions”.

For more information, please visit https://www.akoyabio.com ​​​

 

Evaluation of the innovative biomolecular analysis tool from FOx Biosystems initiated

As part of the VIB’s Technology Watch Initiative, The FOx Biosystems instrument will be used to accelerate research in the field of cancer and neurobiology

FOx Biosystems, a biosensor company, and VIB, the life sciences research institute in Flanders (Belgium), announced today that VIB will become an important research institute to evaluate the White FOx 1.0 in its workflows as part of its vision for adopting breakthrough technologies.

The proprietary FOx technology in the White FOx 1.0 system turns the well-established Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) principle into a highly performant, easy to use and cost-effective analytical instrument for biomolecular interaction analyses. Its performance and versatility makes it an interesting system for VIB to speed up its research in the field of cancer and neurology.

VIB’s Technology Watch Initiative implements new, emerging, and disruptive technologies into its laboratories and research facilities. Active since 2008, the Technology Watch program evaluates strategic technology investment opportunities and provides the funding to secure prototype instruments and  high-potential early-stage technologies.

The White FOx 1.0 will be placed in the lab of Prof. Anna Sablina, in the VIB-KU Leuven Center for Cancer Biology. Professor Sablina’s research is focused on understanding the cooperative interactions that conspire to promote tumorigenic transformation. To discover drivers of cancer development and progression, they create experimental models of cell transformation derived from primary human cells that mimic alterations found in human cancer samples. These models provide a useful platform to delineate pathways involved in cell transformation and to discover new targets for therapeutic intervention. “The FOx technology will also be evaluated in the VIB-KU Leuven Center for Brain & Disease Research amongst others by the lab of prof. Frederic Rousseau and prof. Joost Schymkowitz, and the group of prof. Lucia Chávez Gutiérrez. We expect that the FOx system can have substantial benefits in other research fields across the life sciences also, such as Cancer Research, Structural biology and beyond in therapeutic development” adds Halina Novak, Ph.D., Technology and Innovation manager at VIB.

FOx’ sensor technology can be used, depending on the required sensitivity, in a label-free or labelled mode enabling the quantification of specific proteins, small molecules, DNA and cells in microliter volume samples. “Additional advantages of the FOx technology compared to competing technologies, are its throughput, speed of measuring and the ability to directly analyze crude cell lysates. As such, the White FOx 1.0 makes it possible for our scientists to detect different target molecules up to 10 times faster, at a low cost base and with a high flexibility”, adds Silvie Van den Hoecke, Ph.D., Life Science Technology Specialist at Tech Watch.
“The versatility and robustness of the FOx systems are key benefits in current high-level research,” says Filip Delport, CTO of FOx Biosystems. “The evaluation of our technology by VIB, notably one of Europe’s most innovative research institutes, will show the benefits in different cutting-edge research fields”

More information is available at www.foxbiosystems.com

Weekly synthetic DNA service at VIB

After positive evaluation of SGI-DNA’s BioXp3200 instrument by Tech Watch in collaboration with Thomas Jacobs (PSB), we are happy to announce a weekly synthetic DNA service to the entire VIB community, which will run from the Plant Genome Editing group in PSB.

Please contact: dnasyn@psb.vib-ugent.be for additional info.

VIB Tech Watch is hiring!

Do you have a big interest in emerging technologies that can boost the research at VIB and would you love to work in a stimulating environment?

Apply here to join the VIB Tech Watch team!

Description

VIB is currently looking for a qualified and motivated Life Sciences Technology Specialist

The Technology Watch Team at VIB is continuously analyzing the potential of emerging and disruptive technologies to advance research at VIB. Where appropriate, we mediate privileged access to these platforms by forming partnerships and negotiating purchasing licenses.

The Technology Innovation Lab was set-up in 2017, as part of the Tech Watch initiative, to evaluate the potential of prototype instruments and early-stage technologies from high-potential fields (e.g. CRISPR, single-cell analysis, multiplex imaging…) to be internalized within VIB. As such, the innovation lab has the potential to change how technologies in Life Science research fields can be explored and adopted.

Job description

To this end, we are looking to expand the Technology Watch Team with a Life Sciences Technology Specialist.

In this role, you’ll be actively exploring the potential of novel life sciences technologies and instruments through pilot projects which you will run for and in collaboration with multiple VIB groups. We expect you to evaluate 3-4 pre-commercial and/or recently commercialized instruments or technology platforms for their potential to create value for the VIB community each year (through papers, IP, service fees etc.).

You’ll function as a liaison between emerging life science companies and VIB scientists, facilitating breakthrough science through pilot projects on novel instruments. Your skill set in Life Sciences is adaptable and you already have some experience in working with new technology platforms. Alongside this, you have strong interpersonal skills and therefore have the ability to work with multiple PI’s / Core facilities in a flexible manner.

Profile

Essential:

  • Ph.D. in Life Sciences, preferably with a technology-oriented focus
  • Strong hands-on lab skills and troubleshooting experience
  • Strong project management skills
  • Excellent IT-knowledge
  • Strong and broad interest in the interplay of science, technology and business

Desirable but not required:

  • Experience in technologies related to Proteomics / Sequencing / Microfluidics / Engineering / Single Cell technologies is considered a plus

Key personal characteristics:

  • Strong capability to work independently as well as in team
  • Excellent organizational, communication, writing, networking, negotiation and problem solving skills

How to apply?

Motivated candidates are asked to apply online.  Applications for this position should be written in English and include:

  • A 1-page cover letter.
  • A 1-2 page CV, summarizing the applicant’s career, including a list of publications and contact information for three referees.

Applications (cover letter + CV) should be submitted as a single pdf file.