Parse Biosciences offers a new strategy for single cell RNA sequencing that can profile up to 100,000 cells in parallel across up to 48 samples.
Their pioneering technology uses combinatorial cDNA barcoding within cells themselves, and thus does not require complex cell partitioning instruments.
Individual transcriptomes are uniquely labeled by passing fixed cells or nuclei through four rounds of barcoding. In each round, pooled cells are randomly distributed into different wells, and transcripts are labeled with well-specific barcodes. Using next-generation sequencing, each transcriptome is assembled by combining reads containing the same four-barcode combination. Four rounds of barcoding can yield 3,538,944 possible barcode combinations (three rounds of barcoding in 48x96x96 wells followed by a fourth round with 8 PCR reactions), enough to uniquely label up to one hundred thousand cells while avoiding doublets.