Ion Torrent Personal Genome Machine
Ion Torrent is a newer sequencing platform that is ideally suited as an affordable alternative for sequencing of small genomes or targeted regions of larger genomes. Ion Torrent uses a unique method to obtain sequence data. Similar to pyrosequencing, it flows nucleotides one by one across a cell and measures incorporation of a nucleotide by taking advantage of molecular changes that occur. Unlike other platforms, there is no light detection involved, and therefore no costly and sensitive optics. Instead it detects the change in pH produced by the release of a hydrogen ion when the new nucleotide is incorporated. The major advantages of Ion Torrent are the low price of the machine and reagents and the rapid sequencing technology; runs are completed in less than 3 hours. Ion Torrent is in the process of automating, streamlining, and adding workflows and increasing throughput by improving both read length and read number. The LMT now offers the AmpliSeq Cancer HotSpot Panel as a service and is working to validate additional workflows and applications. Continued development of Ion Torrent will provide a service platform for small-scale sequencing projects, SNP validation, mutation discovery, and CLIA certified NGS for clinical studies.