Ariad Pharmaceuticals Inc. uses its ARGENT (Ariad Regulated Gene Expression Technology) system to deliver a target gene to cells and then control its expression. But the system has some limitations, particularly the need for two transfection cycles to provide both the target gene and the transcription factors that ARIA manipulates to turn expression on and off. That need limits the types of cells in which the gene expression can be studied.

Last week, ARIA researchers published, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, an enhanced version that includes a faster production method, provides access to a larger pool of cell types, and offers tighter regulation of gene expression than the original ARGENT.