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PharmaSeq, Inc., is the inventor and sole manufacturer of the p-Chip®, the world’s first and only ultra-small (500 microns on a side) microtransponder that emits a unique serial number when illuminated with laser light. The p-Chip is a fundamental, new technology that has broad applications in many areas including tagging and tracking and authentication of objects. Additional applications exist in life science and medicine where the technology can be used as a platform to conduct biological research, increase the speed of drug discovery and to improve the reliability of diagnostic testing.

p-Chips are produced similarly to computer chips, using semiconductor manufacturing technologies. p-Chips are very rugged: they are stable within a wide range of temperatures (-200°C to over 200°C) and impervious to harsh chemicals and other challenges. These properties allow for a vast array of applications. When combined with biological molecules, they become the platform for a wide variety of tests involving nucleic acids or proteins. When used to tag objects, p-Chips provide secure identification. Placement strategies include embedding into plastic container walls, mounting onto surfaces, etc.

The p-Chip has the unique ability to link together capabilities enabled by semiconductor and nanoscale fabrication with the power and promises of large scale data storage and data mining contributing to the “Internet of Things”. Because p-Chips contain a serial number that cannot be copied or altered, they confer uniqueness when mounted on many products. Thus, p-Chips can be used to confirm the product’s authenticity and create a chain-of-custody. The size, cost and ease-of-use of p-Chips make them attractive in many markets where current RFID tags or barcodes fail to meet user needs. PharmaSeq intends to leverage its technology to expand market channels and rapidly build revenue. Current areas of commercial activity include tagging small animals and using p-Chips to tag vials in biorepositories, as well as glass slides and tissue cassettes in histopathology laboratories. The company anticipates offering commercial products for diagnostics in the near future.

The p-Chip was invented by Wlodek Mandecki, the founder of PharmaSeq, and was originally developed with an Advanced Technology Program grant from the U.S. National Institute of Standards Technology (NIST). Since then, PharmaSeq has expanded its expertise to include scientific instrument design, electrical and mechanical engineering, optics, material science, software and molecular biology.

PharmaSeq is a private company located near Princeton, New Jersey. Revenue is generated through commercial sales, grants and engineering contracts.