Oligonucleotides for PCR can be cheap, but failed PCR is expensive.
10 years ago, I was in the oligonucleotide manufacturing business. At the time, I was the director of a small enterprise that specialized in real-time PCR fluorescently labeled probes, and their cognate primer sets. Our specialty was in Roche Hybridization Probe® and SimpleProbe®, and ABI TaqMan® chemistries. At that time we were a premium priced producer of these oligonucleotides, primarily because we were the best in the market.
In the last 10 years the real time pcr primer, and real time fluorescent probe market has expanded to a huge number of lower and lower priced vendors. Each of them offer to their customers various degrees of documentation for the quality of the oligos that they are selling. One service they fail to offer is a performance guarantee; sure many of them will replace a failed oligonucleotide, but a typical researcher or diagnostic lab will have run several rt-PCR or qPCR samples before the culprit oligonucleotide is identified. The cost of such investigative work is not solely in the replacement cost of the oligonucleotides themselves, but actually in each of the following categories:
- PCR wet reagent costs, as much as $2.00 per failed reaction, assume 20 reactions or $40.00
- PCR hard plastics, as much as $1.00 per failed reaction, again assume 20 reactions or $20.00
- Technician time, conservatively estimated to be 3 hours at $ 15.00/hr, or $45.00
- Re-order time, and any delays in sample processing that come out of that… $$.
So from this very conservative breakdown, one failed oligonucleotide may cost a lab at least $100+. Add to this $100.00, for actual failed oligonucleotides, the real cost of having to perform the quality control for primers and probes BECAUSE they haven’t been quality assured, and even if the molecules perform well with the in-lab QC, there is still nearly $100.00 cost in performing that QC as well as the added cost of ‘used’ oligonucleotides that could have been dedicated to generating revenue, say for a $20 test, that could be as much as $200 in lost revenue per oligonucleotide order.
So much for cheap oligonucleotides.
Fluoresentric, a real-time PCR assays development company, recognizes that reagent costs are only a small piece of the diagnostic testing balance sheet and that both high throughput, and low throughput labs need guaranteed oligonucleotides that will perform the same today as they did 10 years ago. To help those labs achieve that end, we offer an oligonucleotide QA/QC service where they can get that guarantee. To find out more you can check us out online at store.fluoresentric.com . Online you can get your complete oligonucleotide primers and fluorescent probes ready-to-run for as low as $0.25 per reaction with our unconditional guarantee that they will perform in your real-time PCR, rt PCR, qPCR, genotyping, or whatever type of oligonucleotide application you have. Think of it, no more ordering a synthesis scale and hoping you get enough material to run your tests, no more quality testing required. Just rehydrate and go.