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Cheap Gene Sequencer

If genome sequencing gets cheap enough, it could usher in the age of personalized medicine, in which treatments and preventive measures are tailored to an individual’s genetic makeup. A step in that direction is the Polonator, a new sequencer that will cost roughly a third to a ninth as much as existing technologies. Developed by genomics pioneer George Church, the Polonator tags DNA bases with fluorescent markers and uses a fluorescence microscope to read off the sequences. Coming to market later this year, the Polonator will initially be used for genomic research.

Credit: Bob O’Connor

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