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3CR Bioscience’s 6th anniversary

It’s 3CR Bioscience’s 6th anniversary, and to celebrate this milestone, we thought it was a good time to look back at some key dates in the development of allele-specific PCR, the technology at the core of our PACE® genotyping product range.

Allele-specific PCR (AS-PCR) is a widely used molecular biology technique that facilitates the identification of specific alleles within a mixed population of DNA. Since its first description in scientific literature, modifications and improvements have been implemented, leading to the availability of commercially accessible allele-specific detection systems. The allele-specific detection systems currently on the market exhibit high sensitivity and specificity, making them the preferred technology for detecting single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), Indels, and other genomic variations. These systems only require short sequence information flanking the variant of interest and either a FRET-capable fluorescent plate reader for endpoint measurement or a qPCR machine.

Evolving from the initial probe-based systems like TaqMan™, PACE® genotyping chemistry represents a new generation of allele-specific PCR-based detection systems. It takes advantage of a universal reporting mechanism to eliminate the need for expensive labelled probes.The universal reporting system offers revolutionary cost benefits for genotyping projects of any size. PACE®, created by the developers of KASP™, is the latest iteration of allele-specific PCR, established as a new-generation PCR-genotyping technology with broader adaptability to applications such as marker-assisted selection.

PACE genotyping chemistry offers superior performance with crude DNA samples and provides multiplexing capabilities, the option to observe real-time curves, and one-step genotyping direct from RNA. Importantly, in addition to its enhanced applicability, PACE genotyping reagents remain fully compatible with existing KASP and Amplifluor assays/markers.

In conclusion, allele-specific PCR has undergone significant advancements since its first description in 1989. With the development of new and improved allele-specific detection systems, the latest being PACE genotyping chemistry, researchers now have affordable and accessible tools for the analysis of polymorphisms within DNA and RNA samples, using any qPCR machine or thermal cycler alongside a fluorescent plate reader.

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Steve Asquith Managing Director
Steve began his career in the Genetics Division of GlaxoSmithKline, as part of the team establishing GSK’s high-throughput core genotyping laboratory. Steve joined KBioscience when it was first founded in 2002 and was a key driver in taking the company from a small start-up to a multi-national service laboratory, quickly growing the company’s revenue to over $7.5M p.a. Following the acquisition of Kbioscience by LGC in 2011, Steve was appointed Global Director of Operations for LGC Genomics, responsible for over 100 staff in Europe and N. America, successfully elevating the genotyping products and service business. Steve held a crucial leadership role until he left in 2016. In 2017 Steve joined forces with John Holme to create 3CR Bioscience, a new company with a mission to deliver outstanding, customer-focused genotyping products with innovation and affordability at its core.
Dr. John Holme Technical Director
John joined KBioscience shortly after it was founded, in 2003, and became Head of Technical Development, building the company's genotyping and DNA extraction product portfolio and service delivery until 2011 when it was acquired by LGC. Post-acquisition, John was appointed Head of Technical Group for LGC Genomics, in charge of all Research & Development and Technical Support activities for the company. In this role John continued to build on the high-quality products and services provided to the companies growing customer base. During the 19 years John has worked in commercial R&D, he has co-invented numerous highly successful products including PACE®, ProbeSure, KASP™, KlearKall, KlearGene, KlearAmp and KlearTaq™, creating breakthrough offerings in genotyping and extraction and generating huge revenues for the companies he has worked in. In 2017, he joined forces with Steve Asquith and started 3CR Bioscience. John is dedicated to developing outstanding, innovative genotyping products and providing the very best technical support to customers globally.
Dr. Nisha JainOperations Director
Nisha has been innovating since the start of her career at Geneform Technologies developing Iso-thermal Genotyping Technologies. Nisha joined KBioscience in 2008, as Senior R&D Scientist and key account Technical Support Scientist, developing KASP and Klearkall performance and coinventing two further versions of KASP. Nisha has more than 15 years’ experience working in molecular biology and genotyping technologies, with extensive experience in the areas of R&D, Quality Assurance and Customer Technical Support. She has technically assisted many giants of the industry with their protocol development and troubleshooting and continues to deliver high-quality support and guidance. In 2018, Nisha joined 3CR Bioscience as Operations Director where she continues to develop PACE and ProbeSure for an increasing range of applications, and to grow 3CR Bioscience’s new product pipeline. Nisha is dedicated to developing outstanding, innovative genotyping products and providing the very best technical support to customers globally.
Nazma Saffin General Manager
For 20 years Nazma Saffin has worked and gained extensive expertise within the genotyping sector. Working at Kbioscience and then LGC, she has held operational leadership posts responsible for manufacturing and laboratory services. With experience of ISO 9001 implementation, production scale up and LEAN operations, Nazma has successfully led highly profitable production departments. Joining 3CR Bioscience in 2022, Nazma is committed to delivering operational excellence.
Jon Curtis Non-Executive Chair
After 8 years in The Royal Air Force, Jon moved to the Imperial Cancer Research Fund where he pioneered the use of ultra high-throughput genomic automation, capable of 46,000 PCRs per hour. In the 1990’s Jon joined GlaxoSmithKline, implementing a high-throughput genomics platform into their drug discovery pipeline. Whilst there he also developed acoustic mixing into compound management, becoming the gold standard across pharma. Jon developed the world’s first commercially viable 1536-well PCR plates, automated thermal & laser plate-sealer, plus automated liquid-handling & tip washing tools to reduce waste and costs. In 2002 Jon co-founded KBioscience with Phil Robinson, utilising ultra high-throughput PCR instrumentation & a suite of automation tools to create the company’s SNPline robotic platform, with a capacity of 250,000 PCRs/day. The business was underpinned by their ground-breaking patented genotyping chemistry, KASP™, which has over 10,000 scientific papers to date. In November 2022 Jon joined 3CR Bioscience acting as an advisor bringing his commercial and scientific experience to the company.