Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Merry Christmas!!

Christmas Wishes from everyone at Caltag Medsystems!

As the festive season fast approaches we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your custom and wish you continued success though 2012.

Holiday Opening Hours
The office will close on Friday 23rd December and  re-open again on Tuesday 3rd January 2012. 
10% Off All Orders
Don't forget to place your order before 31st December 2011 to qualify for 10% off. Quote the code "MIND10" on your purchase order to receive this discount.
Follow us on twitter for all the best offers and up to date news in 2012!
Did you know..... 

  • The first decorated Christmas tree was erected in Riga, Latvia in 1510.
  • 832 – The number of homes Santa visits every second to deliver all his presents.
  • Prince Albert, husband to Queen Victoria, brought the first Christmas tree to Windsor Castle in 1834.
  • The day after Christmas is known as Boxing Day. Not named for the sport, the name comes from the alms boxes that were emptied and given to the poor after Christmas.
  • The world’s largest Christmas present was the Statue of Liberty. The French gave it to the US in 1886. It is 46.5 meters high and weights 225 tons!
  • 5340 – Average number of times Visa Cards are used every minute during Christmas time.
  • Since 1947 Oslo has sent an Xmas tree to London to thank us for our help in the Second World War. 

We hope you enjoy your break and wish you all the very best for the coming year!

Monday, 19 December 2011

New Application for Analyzing Functionally Related miRNAs

New technology to isolate and analyze intact RBP-mRNA-miRNA complexes.
RIP-Chip (ribonucleoprotein immunoprecipitation-microarray profiling) is a biochemical approach to identify the composition and organization of endogenous mRNAs, miRNAs and RNA binding proteins (RBPs) within messenger ribonucleoprotein (mRNP) complexes. RIP-Chip has been successfully employed to isolate AGO-containing RNPs by immunopurification with anti-AGO antibodies. When the co-isolated miRNA and mRNA subpopulations are analyzed using the computational predictions of conserved seed sequences, this approach provides a powerful tool to identify functional miRNA targets based on their physical interaction in vivo. RBPs have been reported to bind to mRNAs that encode functionally related proteins, and coordinately regulate these mRNAs during cellular processes. The RIP-Chip approach can isolate functionally related mRNAs. Since miRNAs can be co-immunoprecipitated with those mRNAs, the RIP-Chip approach can also isolate miRNAs that regulate specific group of mRNAs that are functionally related.
The new miRNA RIP-chip system is designed to identify miRNAs bound to their mRNA targets, analyze the maturation mechanism of miRNAs, identify RISC components and analyze their functions.
Recent studies suggest that mRNAs encoding functionally related protein and their regulatory microRNAs bind to the common RNA binding proteins (RBPs), forming so-called RiboClusters.
MBL’s RIP-Assay Kit for micro RNA enables you to immunoprecpitate RiboClusters through RBP specific antibodies and isolate the RNAs and their regulatory micro RNAs associated with the RiboCluster (RIP Assay). You can thus isolate cluster specific mRNAs as well as miRNAs for subsequent analysis by microarray, sequencing or RT-PCR.

miRNA Assay Kit

miRNA Validated Antibodies

Click here to view RIP Assay Kits from MBL
Click here to view related antibodies from MBL 

Friday, 16 December 2011

Reliable antigenemia test to detect active CMV infection

CMV Brite™ Turbo

The antigenemia standard for CMV diagnosis and monitoring after transplantation

CMV infection in the healthy human, is usually subclinical. However, in the immunocompromised host and the developing foetus it may result in either localized or disseminated disease. Clinical manifestations of CMV disease include pneumonia, retinitis, hepatitis, enteritis, and neurological disease. Despite improved treatment modalities, CMV infection may result in significant morbidity and mortality. Patients are at risk from both primary CMV infection and reactivation of latent virus.

Early and rapid diagnosis of active CMV infection is of great importance in avoiding over-treatment with immunosuppressive drugs and in guiding antiviral therapy. The standard in CMV testing, antigenemia, is a non-culture technique that detects an active infection by blood sample analysis and is optimized for use in the CMV Brite™ and CMV Brite™ Turbo kit.

CMV Brite™, the first FDA registered immunofluorescence antigenemia kit for in vitro CMV diagnosis, uses the well defined C10/C11 antibody cocktail to detect the CMV lower matrix phosphoprotein (pp65), an early antigen in virus replication, which is abundantly present in antigen-positive polymorphonuclear cells (PMNs). The CMV Brite™ kit contains all the reagents and sample analysis is completed in 4 hours. The kit is available in 40 and 100 test format. The 40 test kit is designed for analysis of single patient samples per experiment, while in the 100 test kit more patient samples can be analyzed in parallel per experiment. A unique feature of this kit is the option for further susceptibility studies of the (positive) isolated PBMC fraction not possible with any other antigenemia kit. The CMV Brite™ Turbo kit, is a rapid version of the CMV Brite™ kit and results are obtained in 2 hours!

Special features of the CMV Brite Turbo Kit

  • A complete kit containing all the reagents needed from cell preparation to immunofluorescence staining.
  • A cocktail of antibodies specific for pp65. Antibodies C10/C11 are highly specific for pp65 and have been well documented (2,3,4,5).
  • Detection of CMV pp65 positive PMNs by indirect immunofluorescence gives high sensitivity and easy reading of the results.
  • The number of CMV pp65 positive cells are counted per duplicate stain.
  • Control slides are included. Each slide contains one negative and one positive control spot. The positive control spot is a combination of normal blood leukocytes and pp65 transfected cells.
  • Shelf life of at least 18 months.
  • Completed within 2 hours of sample collection.

Materials and reagents supplied in the CMV Brite™ Turbo Kit

  • Erythrocyte Lysing Solution
  • Fixative solution
  • Permeabilization solution
  • Mouse monoclonal antibody C10/C11 specific for CMV pp65
  • FITC conjugated sheep anti-mouse immunoglobulin with Evans Blue
  • Control slides. Each slide containing one negative and one CMV pp65 positive cytospot
Product Code: VIR-CMV 110

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Vascular endothelium: Role in disease pathogenesis & as a therapeutic target

We will be exhibiting at the 14th Imperial College London Symposium - Vascular endothelium: Role in disease pathogenesis & as a therapeutic target to be held on 15th December 2011 at the W12 Conference Centre at the Hammersmith Hospital.

The event is co-organised by the Kennedy Institute of Rheumatology and the Cardiovascular Medicine Unit of Imperial College London. As on previous occasions, it will bring together scientists and clinicians from basic and translational research, investigating the vascular endothelium in health, inflammation, cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Registration is open from 09:00 where coffee will be available and the presentations begin at 09:30 and the meeting will conclude at approximately 17:30.

Click here to view the agenda.

Please click here for more details.

Friday, 9 December 2011

miRNA Northern Blot Assay Kit

Expression of miRNAs is highly regulated and tissue-specific. Many of miRNAs are differentially expressed in human cancers. Microarray profiling of miRNA expression leads to identification of differentially expressed miRNA in cancers. miRNA expression, tissue distribution, and microarray data validation often need northern blot analysis, with which the difference can be directly visualized, mature miRNA differentiated from its precursor, and the expression level of miRNA compared with internal controls such as U6 RNA. Signosis miRNA northern blot assay kits provide a non-radioactive, simple, and highly sensitive tool to conduct the assay.

miRNA northern blot assay kits offer the following benefits:
  • No isotope is required - it is a chemiluminescent-based detection.
  • No probe preparation - biotin pre-labelled probes are available.
  • All components in one kit - gel, membrane, and solutions for RNA transfer, hybridization, and detection are provided in the kits.
  • Simple procedure – the assay is simple and straightforward.
RNA samples are separated through gel electrophoresis and transferred onto a membrane. Expression of a specific miRNA is detected with a biotin-labelled probe. This regular Northern blot assay is suitable to most moderate to high expressors of miRNA. High sensitive Northern blot (NB-1001 and HP-XXXX) is needed to analyze low expressors of miRNA.

Product code: NB-0001
Download the datasheet here.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Adiponectin – Promising Biomarker of Metabolic Syndrome

Adiponectin (ACRP30; AdipoQ) is a promising biomarker of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) but also as a potential target for management of the metabolic syndrome. It is a very robust marker that is not prone to degradation or acute inflammatory challenges, is present in relatively high concentrations in the peripheral circulation, and can be collected by a variety of methods.

The benefits of using adiponectin assays in clinical settings include:
  • prediction of risk of diabetes and metabolic status
  • providing a tool to monitor metabolic improvements

Adiponectin exerts anti-atherogenic & anti-inflammatory properties and may be important as a biomarker for obesity-related cardiovascular disease (CVD). New findings showed urinary adiponectin excretion as an independent new biomarker of microvascular and macrovascular damage in T2DM and suggested it as a very promising tool for early cardiovascular disease risk assessment. Adiponectin serum level was also described as a good biomarker of colorectal adenoma, this being related to the positive correlation between obesity and increased risk of cancer at various sites (colorectal, breast, prostate and endometrium).

Adiponectin (human) ELISA Kit

Product Code: AG-45A-0002EK-KI01 (1 x 96 well plate)
Product Code: AG-45A-0002TP-KI01 (2 x 96 well plate)
Product Code: AG-45A-0002PP-KI01 (5 x 96 well plate)
Other species available include mouse (AG-45A-0004) and rat (AG-45A-0005).

Adiponectin (human) Competitive ELISA Kit

Product Code: AG-45A-0002EK-KI01 (1 x 96 well plate)
Product Code: AG-45A-0002TP-KI01 (2 x 96 well plate)
Product Code: AG-45A-0002PP-KI01 (5 x 96 well plate)
Other species available include rhesus monkey, macaque (AG-45A-0003).

Monday, 5 December 2011

RiboTrap: Global Analysis of RNP clusters using RNA affinity tags

The RiboTrap Kit  from MBL is used to isolate RBPs and other proteins that are associated with mRNA, ribosomal RNA (rRNA), transfer RNA (tRNA), viral RNA, miRNA or any other RNA of interest from either the cytoplasmic or nuclear extract of cultured mammalian cells. Post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression plays important roles in most cellular processes such as development and metabolism and in many diseases such as cancer progression. RNP complexes are the fundamental units of post-transcriptional regulation of mRNA. RNA molecules, including mRNA and non-coding species such as microRNA (miRNA), exist in RNP complexes with specific RNA-binding proteins (RBPs). The RiboTrap Kit utilizes BrU-labeled mRNA to isolate the RBP bound to the gene of interest. 

Principle of the RiboTrap Kit

The RNA of interest is modified with 5-bromo-UTP (BrUTP) by in vitro transcription, followed by incubation with a cell lysate (cytoplasmic extract or nuclear extract) to form the assembled RNA-RBP complexes. The BrU-labeled RNA-RBP complexes are then immunoaffinity-purified by anti-BrdU monoclonal antibody (mAb), which cross-reacts with BrUTP. RBPs associated with the BrU-labeled RNA can then be identified by immunoblotting or mass spectroscopy. Three different wash buffers provided in the RiboTrap Kit allow for analysis of both weakly and tightly bound RBPs. The wash buffer with mild conditions (Wash Buffer I) is usually used for primary screening of total RBPs, while wash buffer with stringent conditions (Wash Buffer II or III) is suitable for purifying tightly bound RBPs. Antisense RNA (corresponding to complementary RNA of interest) or truncated RNA of interest is used to exclude nonspecific binding proteins. Elution buffer composed of the optimal concentration of BrdU allows specific recovery of BrU-RNA/protein complexes. RBPs isolated with native conformations can be used in several downstream applications.

For more information on RiboTrap click here.

Friday, 2 December 2011

Epigenetic ELISA Kits from Abnova

The field of epigenetic screening has become one of the most exciting areas of biological research and is increasingly becoming the focus of drug developments. Epigenetic mechanisms are inheritable factors that regulate genetic expression without changing the DNA sequence.

Factors such as post translational modifications on the N-terminal tails of histones or methylation on the cytosine of DNA can induce changes to chromatin structure, thereby regulating DNA expression. Abnormalities in this process play a critical role in many important human diseases, especially in cancer and metabolic diseases. Abnova provide robust and ready-to-use assay kits with specific antibodies and innovative detection methods that can shorten assay times.

Abnova Epigenetic Kit Categories:

DNA Methylation (10 Kits): Methyltransferase Assay, Demethylase Assay, Quantification, Capture
Histone Methylation (54 Kits): Methyltransferase Assay, Demethylase Assay, Quantification
Histone Acetylation (21 Kits): Acetyltransferase Assay, Deacetylase Assay, Quantification
Histone Phosphorylation (5 Kits): Quantification

Advantages of these Products:
  • Quick and efficient
  • Innovative colorimetric and fluorometric assays
  • Very sensitive, requiring very low amounts
  • Controls are conveniently included for quantification
  • Strip microplate format makes the assay flexible: manual or high throughput
  • Simple, reliable, and consistent assay conditions
  • In situ histone phosphorylation and methylation kits available (whole cell-based detection)
Note - These advantages apply to the majority of our kits. Please refer to product protocols for specific details.

Epigenetic Antibody Showcase:

Epigenetics Antibodies. 3541 antibodies for the study of heritable changes in gene function without DNA sequence change
Chromatin Regulation Antibodies. 1127 antibodies for histone, histone demethylases and chromatin structure modification
Histone Deacetylase Antibodies. 144 antibodies against enzymes that remove acetyl groups from histones
DNMT Antibodies. 20+ antibodies for DNA methyltransferase family to transfer a methyl group to DNA
ChIP Antibodies. 91 specific antibodies for Chromatin Immuno-precipitation, CIITA, ESR1, H3F3A, HDAC1, and more.

Caltag Medsystems is the UK distributor for Abnova, please visit or call 01280827460 for UK pricing.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day is held on 1 December each year and is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died. World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day and the first one was held in 1988.

More than 90,000 people are currently living with HIV in the UK and globally an estimated 33.3 million people have HIV. More than 25 million people between 1981 and 2007 have died from the virus, making it one of the most destructive pandemics in history.

Today, many scientific advances have been made in HIV treatment, there are laws to protect people living with HIV and we understand so much more about the condition. But despite this, people do not know the facts about how to protect themselves and others from HIV, and stigma and discrimination remain a reality for many people living with HIV. World AIDS Day is important as it reminds the public and Government that HIV has not gone away – there is still a vital need to raise money, increase awareness, fight prejudice and improve education.

HIV Facts

  • HIV stands for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. It is a virus which attacks the body's immune system — the body's defense against diseases.
  • HIV can be passed on through infected bodily fluids, most commonly via sex without a condom or by sharing infected needles, syringes or other injecting drug equipment.
  • There are now more people than ever living with HIV in the UK — more than 90,000 — with around a quarter of those unaware they have the virus.
  • Over 90% of people with HIV were infected through sexual contact
  • You can now get tested for HIV using a saliva sample
  • HIV is not passed on through spitting, biting or sharing utensils
  • Only 1% of babies born to HIV positive mothers have HIV
  • You can get the results of an HIV test in just 15-20 minutes
  • There is no vaccine and no cure for HIV

Show your support for people living with HIV on World AIDS Day by wearing a red ribbon, the international symbol of HIV awareness.

NAT has launched HIVaware – to remember the importance of raising awareness of HIV all year round.

To show your support and donate to World AIDS Day click here.

To view more information on World AIDS Day, HIV and the National AIDS Trust view the website.

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