qPCR meeting in Germany

Not quite the last minute – but not too far off – and I was registered to attend the qPCR symposium just outside Munich in Germany. This was the 2nd time I had been to this meeting and the last time (2019) was when the meeting had last been held. As such, the usual anticipation of catching up with people – in our case, both those on the bench and commercial people from several of our suppliers – was heightened by the ‘long time between drinks’. And in the case of German beer – well, literally !

A mixture of commercial and research/diagnostic based talks meant there were plenty of discussions of interest. Of note:

  • Always great to hear Carl Wittwer speak. Now working with Co-Dx on a small real-time PCR device (complete with melting curves) for rapid (30 minute) extraction and detection of infectious diseases. Who is building the extreme PCR platform?
  • Talking of COVID, great to finally meet Ann Wyllie after years of emailing about saliva testing. She was talking on using the Mic (qPCR) and Myra (to set up reactions) in a portable setting (a van) for the rapid testing of saliva for COVID . . .and other infections in future (flu and RSV). Sorry for my weird sense of humour Ann – and even worse German accent (sure, I’m going to introduce myself as some one else)
  • Chief qPCR geek Dave Schuster from Quantabio. The man has enzyme domains, sources and activities rattling around in his head. When you tell him how well one of the products is working in the lab, he’s right back with ‘wait until you see the new . . . .’.. An excellent talk by Subrata on the new conventional PCR mix repliqa and Sanger finding it the best mix for NGS library amplification (check out the webinar which we’ll link here when available). And thanks for the prototype reagents coming Ryan. . .
  • Catching up on the commercial side with Heather, Ruth and Ishna from Quantabio. New activities coming – not that you’d know when an Australian friend jumps behind the stand. Just as well he’s a big enzyme user from Quantabio so Heather and Ruth couldn’t kick you out Ian !
  • A talk from Stephen Bustin (of MIQE fame) spoke about his development of an extreme PCR for SARS CoV-2 and the difficulty behind the realisation of speed – both in physically getting an instrument to do the work and also getting others to understand the benefits of fast detection. He didn’t need to convince me – something in which we’ve long been interested.

More talks, dinner in the world’s oldest brewery (1040 – yep, nearly 1,000 years old) and more people to talk qPCR and NGS with – all refreshed with excellent beer, makes for an excellent meeting. Thanks Michael.

Tags : Dave Schuster, dnature, Ian Mackay, John Mackay, qPCR symposium


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