Patterned flow cells are produced using semiconductor manufacturing technology. Starting with a glass substrate, patterned nanowells are etched into the surface for optimal cluster spacing. Each nanowell contains DNA probes used to capture prepared DNA strands for amplification during cluster generation. The regions between the nanowells are devoid of DNA probes.
The process ensures that DNA clusters only form within the nanowells, providing even, consistent spacing between adjacent clusters and allowing accurate resolution of clusters during imaging. Maximal use of the flow cell surface leads to overall higher clustering.
Our proprietary exclusion amplification clustering method further increases data output. Exclusion amplification allows simultaneous seeding (landing of the DNA strand in the nanowell) and amplification during cluster generation, which reduces the chances of multiple library fragments amplifying in a single cluster. This method maximizes the number of nanowells occupied by DNA clusters originating from a single DNA template, increasing the amount of usable data from each run.
Patterned flow cell technology makes data-intensive applications more cost-effective. The NovaSeq X and NovaSeq X Plus systems unite the latest high-performance imaging with the next generation of Illumina patterned flow cell technology. The updated NovaSeq X series flow cell design further reduces the spacing between nanowells, significantly increasing cluster density and data output.