National Institutes of Health (NIH), under the SHIFT initiative, has granted two Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Phase I awards, totaling $800k over 2 years, to Circulomics.

Circulomics will use the grants to develop its Ligo-miR microRNA assay technology, which uses PCR-free, ligation-based multiplexing to acquire the expression profile of 10-100 microRNA in a single streamlined assay.

Studies conducted on Ligo-miR has demonstrated > 100-fold higher sensitivity, > 10-fold lower cost per sample, and > 10-fold higher sample throughput than microarray based approaches.

The company will also use the grant to develop its PicoSep single molecule analysis instrument which uses micro-/nanofluidics and single molecule technology to perform molecular analysis with as little as 5 picoliters of sample and less than 100 DNA molecules.

In addition, the company has received $75k from Maryland TEDCO to develop its first commercial product based on Ligo-miR technology called Ligo-miR EZ.