By Kristy Dorsey

Edinburgh’s Arrayjet has signed a seven-figure deal with CDI Laboratories to further the US firm’s research and development programme.

The contract is said to be worth in the region of $1 million (£797,000) and is the second installation of Arrayjet equipment at CDI. The new IRIS Optical system joins the Arrayjet Ultra Marathon II microarray printer that was installed in 2015.

Headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, CDI produces the largest protein microarray in the world. Also known as protein chips, microarrays are used in a variety of scientific applications, including new drug discovery.

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CDI prints nearly 22,000 proteins on a single chip, which involves extreme precision. The IRIS Optical system has a dual camera mounted on either side of the printhead for enhanced quality control.

“The CDI mission is to empower research and development with proprietary technologies,” vice president Scott Paschke said. “In essence, we create tools that help accelerate research by designing tools to improve research in the area of proteomics.

“Arrayjet’s printing technology is certainly cutting edge and we expect it to significantly improve our capacity and quality.”

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The deal is separate from a collaboration announced in May under which Arrayjet and CDI are developing a diagnostic programme to monitor large numbers of people to determine which are developing immunity to Covid-19. Arrayjet currently has “about 10” coronavirus-related projects in the pipeline.

Employing 30 people, Arrayjet is privately-owned with financial backers including Archangel Investors and Scottish Enterprise. It was set up in 2000 to commercialise technology from academics at the University of Edinburgh.