Miami Cancer Institute Conducted Virology Research Using RNAdvance Viral Extraction Kit

Customer Spotlight: Beckman Coulter Life Sciences had the honor of interviewing Weiming Shen, MS, ASCPCM, Manager of the Genomics Laboratory Service at Miami Cancer Institute, to discuss her team’s progress with virology research.

Miami Cancer Institute Testimonial Weiming ShenDuring early 2020, Weiming Shen was conducting cancer genomic profiling and biomarker research as usual. But when she started to notice the number of COVID-19 cases worldwide increasing drastically every day, she wondered if there were something she could do to contribute. Weiming and her colleagues believed they had both the tools and knowledge necessary for supporting this effort. They decided to rapidly shift the focus of their work.

Recently, Weiming and her team completed RNA extraction validation independently using RNAdvance Viral reagents from Beckman Coulter Life Sciences. RNA extraction is required to isolate COVID-19 viral RNA for downstream genomic applications. When asked why Weiming initiated COVID-19 research using RNAdvance Viral, she conceded the reagents were not, in fact, her first choice. Still, she was in urgent need of “an alternative RNA extraction solution due to an in-house kit shortage.”

Previous positive working experience with the Beckman Coulter Life Sciences Genomics team led her to reach out again to that team, which responded to her request immediately. To ensure a successful extraction evaluation, the Beckman team provided the reagents her team needed within 24 hours.

Miami Cancer Institute Testimonial TeamWeiming and her team first tested the RNA extraction efficiency of Beckman reagents using an RNA standard that was spiked into the viral transport media. The RNA extracted by RNAdvance Viral showed comparable Ct Values to their in-house kit, and is consistent with the RNA Standard control. RNAdvance Viral showed an analytical performance of about 1 copy/µL. Weiming’s team also observed a consistently lower Ct when compared to the in-house RNA extraction kit (Ct average: 35.1 vs. 36.7).

She and her team performed an RNA comparison study using her downstream RT-PCR process against their other qualified kit. They were pleased to discover that RNAdvance Viral showed showed 100% concordance for all samples.

Miami Cancer Institute Testimonial Biomek i5 for RT-qPCR

Dianelis Mondejar Alvarez is setting up RT-qPCR using Biomek i5 (right).

Given the continuing global shortage of many RNA extraction reagents due to current demand, seeing this successful result makes Weiming feel exceptionally confident using the RNAdvance Viral as their alternative RNA extraction method for virology research. As she said, the most critical learning throughout this process is “It’s always good to be prepared with a backup plan.”

Virology research is vital in helping scientists fight the pandemic. With support from the Beckman team, Weiming and her team were able to complete the RNA extraction evaluation in less than one week.

Weiming was glad she reached out to the Beckman team because they are always committed, she says, “to (providing) fast technical support and reagents so quickly. Mostly, the willingness to help (the) customer in any way (they) can.”

Beckman Coulter Life Sciences is proud to be a small part of our customer’s fight against COVID-19. We appreciate that Weiming and her team took on the challenge to help allay some of the concern so many Americans have about this evolving pandemic.

She and her team are truly the real heroes of this story.

Miami Cancer Institute Testimonial Transport Samples for RNA Extraction

Melanhy Da Silva and internal team members are getting ready to transport samples between Baptist Hospitals and Miami Cancer Institute for RNA extraction.

Product Information: Viral RNA Extraction Reagent Kits

RNAdvance Viral Reagent Kit - 768 Preps
Part number: C63510

RNAdvance Viral reagent kit isolates RNA from Saliva and Swab Transport Media


RNAdvance Viral XP Reagent Kit - 1056 Preps
Part number: C59543

RNA Isolation from Viral Samples RNAdvance Viral XP Reagent Kit

For research use, not intended for diagnostic purposes.

Related Webinar

Watch the collaboration between Beckman Coulter Life Sciences and Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT) for the solutions to qPCR sample prep, featuring viral RNA extraction reagent kits.

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Extraction Kits:
RNAdvance Viral
RNAdvance Viral XP
Performance Data

Genomic Automated Workstations:
PCR Purification
RNA/DNA Extraction


Customer Testimonial
PDF Version:

   Miami Cancer Institute Conducted Virology Research Using RNAdvance Viral 

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Performance Data:

  RNAdvance Viral and Viral XP Data Sheet Screenshot 

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White Paper:

White Paper: Characterization of RNAdvance Viral XP RNA Extraction Kit using AccuPlex™ SARS–CoV–2 Reference Material Kit

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