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By Kate Dalke

A new microarray with the entire genome of the SARS virus is now available—free of charge—to qualified scientists through collaboration between the U.S. government and industry.

Affymetrix GeneChip array.

The U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) has teamed up with Affymetrix, Inc. to distribute their SARS chip through a program called the Pathogen Functional Genomics Resource Center. The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Rockville, Maryland, runs the program.

The SARS chip contains all 29,700 base pairs of the SARS virus. The chip could help researchers detect differences in particular strains of the virus and study the virus’ evolution over time.

The initiative was announced last week and researchers have already begun to apply online to receive the free SARS chip. Turnaround for applications should be about two weeks, says Maria Giovanni of the NIAID.

Details about the application can be found here.

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