Vizgen Launches Predesigned MERFISH Gene Panels at AACR 2023

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting is a culmination of the latest innovations and achievements in the cancer research community. Vizgen was proud to exhibit and present four posters at this year’s meeting, with one poster showcasing data generated by our new MERSCOPE PanCancer Pathways Panel.


Unveiling Predesigned Gene Panels

As a leader in spatial genomics, we are constantly developing new ways to help researchers use this technology to gain new insights into the biological systems that govern human health and disease, while providing universal access to our tools. While the MERSCOPE® Platform is known for its customizability, many scientists just entering the field of spatial genomics are looking for a more convenient starting point to explore adding these capabilities to their research. This month we announced the release of two new predesigned MERFISH gene panels in oncology and neuroscience – the first of many planned for our MERSCOPE product portfolio. These panels represent a readily available off-the-shelf option, including lists of genes selected from published literature and our extensive experience in characterizing cell types and behavior in complex tissues.

MERSCOPE PanCancer Pathways Panel for Investigating Human Tumor Biology

The PanCancer Pathways Panel features a list of genes targeting canonical signaling pathways of cancer and is constructed using recognized oncology databases, providing a key tool for researchers to study tumor behavior at cellular and subcellular levels across multiple different types of cancers.

The PanCancer Pathways Panel features:

  • Characterization of major oncology signaling pathways including RAS/RTK, PI3K, NOTCH, MYC, Cell Cycle, HIPPO
  • Inclusion of cell type markers to identify healthy and disease states
  • Compatibility across multiple cancer types

FIGURE 1: The PanCancer Pathways predesigned MERFISH gene panel for the MERSCOPE Platform provides researchers with a curated list of 500 biologically relevant genes signaling pathways of a variety of human cancers.

Take a look at our press release here to learn more our new predesigned MERFISH gene panel for MERSCOPE.

MERSCOPE PanNeuro Cell Type Panel for Investigating the Mouse Brain

The PanNeuro Cell Type Panel was constructed using the Allen Mouse Brain Atlas, published literature and published Vizgen Mouse Brain datasets to provide researchers with the ability to identify cells and probe neuronal signaling, activity and connectivity at cellular and subcellular levels.

The PanNeuro Cell Type Panel features:

  • Identification of all major cell types including astrocytes, ependymal cells, immune cells, neurons, oligodendrocytes, peripheral glial cells, and vascular cells
  • Resolution of neuronal and non-neuronal cell subtypes
  • Exploration of functional information of cell subtypes
  • Investigation of cell interactions across the mouse brain

FIGURE 2: MERSCOPE PanNeuro Cell Type Panel 500 Gene (Mouse) for the MERSCOPE Platform provides researchers with a curated list of 500 biologically relevant genes to enable cell typing and investigation of cellular functional states in the mouse brain.

For additional detailed about this predesigned gene panel, check out our press release here.


AACR 2023 Poster Presentations

Our team presented four posters at this year’s AACR meeting, with data highlighting the MERSCOPE Platform’s ability to accurately characterize individual cells in a wide range of human tumor types, including:

  • Breast cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Lung cancer
  • Liver cancer

Title: Characterizing cancer-associated fibroblasts in prostate cancer using Vizgen’s MERSCOPE® Platform
Presenter: Ben Patterson, PhD, Vizgen
Download here

Title: Spatially resolved single-cell transcriptomic profiling in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues
Presenter: Leiam Colbert, PhD, Vizgen
Download here

Title: Interrogating immuno-oncological interactions in the tumor microenvironment
Presenter: Ben Patterson, PhD, Vizgen
Download here

Title: A pathway-centric approach to characterizing tumor heterogeneity and cell diversity across multiple cancer types
Presenter: Leiam Colbert, PhD, Vizgen
Download here

In addition to the posters presented by the Vizgen team, Jonathan Chen, MD, PhD, Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, presented findings from human lung cancer data generated on the MERSCOPE Platform in a poster titled: Spatial clustering reveals immune hub interaction with reservoir of stem- like CD8 T cells and predicts immunotherapy response in lung cancer patients.

Dr. Chen and collaborators were able to define multicellular networks within the tumor microenvironment that are involved in the anti-tumor immune response. Moreover, the level of detail provided by the MERSCOPE Platform allowed them to identify specific immune cell subtypes and functions that were associated with positive outcomes for immunotherapy, providing a wealth of potential candidates for biomarkers and future drug targets. A full-length publication detailing this work is currently available as a pre-print.

Our team enjoyed connecting with the cancer research community at AACR in our booth and had a blast walking through platform and software demonstrations. We look forward to returning to the meeting next year, see you in San Diego!

FIGURE 3: We had an incredible time at AACR 2023! Our booth showcased our 20×20 design that enables visitors to interact with MERSCOPE datasets and partake in a MERSCOPE Platform demonstration. This year we introduced the AACR exclusive Ollie, oncology MERFISH to our fans.