Automation increases neonatal screening throughput

Astoria-Pacific International has chosen Tecan’s Freedom EVO liquid handling platform to automate its new SPOTCHECK Pro Neonatal Screening assays for biotinidase and GALT (galactose-1-phosphate uridyltransferase).

Alana Lerch, Newborn Screening Product Manager at Astoria-Pacific International, explained: “SPOTCHECK Pro is a microplate-based system, offering end–to–end automation for routine neonatal testing. The Freedom EVO platform is able to fully integrate all the modules necessary for complete automation of our assays, offering customers the ability to run overnight and at weekends, with minimal maintenance requirements.

“The system is controlled by Tecan’s Freedom EVOware Plus software, using barcoded microplates to ensure correct sample identification. Automation significantly improves throughput from around five to eighteen assayed plates in one day, and can run mixed batches of biotinidase and GALT plates to offer even greater efficiency. Automation also eliminates the potential for errors that can occur during manual operation, reducing the need for repeat testing, and maintenance time is drastically reduced.

“The support team at Tecan has been wonderful throughout the development process of this new system, and Tecan experts have helped with software updates and incorporating new features to accommodate us. We have already obtained approval in the US for the SPOTCHECK Biotinidase kit, and we are currently seeking approval for the GALT kit. We also plan to add further SPOTCHECK tests in the future with Tecan’s help.”

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