Spectrecology GrouperChek by PureMolecular

NASBA – rapid, portable point-of-use testing solutions

Spectrecology has teamed with PureMolecular to develop products for rapid point of use testing based on NASBA technology. Our first product – GrouperChek – is used for discriminating highl value Grouper species from cheaper imposter fish. Detecting mislabeled and fraudulent seafood is a growing need.  Our technology can be applied to many applications in food safety, infection detection, species identification, virtually any application where detection of living materials is required.

Call us to discuss your project!

We can develop and manufacture NASBA tests and reagents to meet your application.

Spectrecology   727.230.1607    NASBA@spectrecology.com


NASBA is fast!

  • NASBA is similar to PCR (polymerase chain reaction) in that the target nucleic acid is replicated or amplified. NASBA is faster than PCR for 2 reasons:
  • NASBA amplifies mRNA, which occurs as thousands of copies per cell. PCR targets DNA which exists as a single copy per cell
  • NASBA is isothermal. PCR requires temperature cycling to uncoil the double helix of DNA
  • NASBA can yield positive results in 10 – 30 minutes compared to ~24 hours for PCR

NASBA targets living cells!

  • NASBA targets mRNA, present only in living cells and only when genes are being expressed. PCR detects DNA in living and dead cells.

NASBA does not rely on cultures!

  • Many micro-organisms cannot be cultured, and so are not detected with classical methods. NASBA tests all the microorganisms that are present in the sample

NASBA is quantitative!

  • Internal controls in our tests allow for excellent quantification

NASBA is easy to use!

  • Our specialty is making easy to use test kits and instrumentation for point of use by non laboratory professionals.


GrouperChek™ Isothermal Chemistry

PureMolecular’s GrouperChek™ assay utilizes real-time nucleic acid sequence-based amplification (NASBA) to amplify a genetic region and molecular beacons for detection. Three enzymes work in concert to achieve exponential RNA amplification without the need for thermal cycling. Reactions are completed in less than 30 minutes, allowing users to perform fast qualitative analysis. Additionally, GrouperChek™ enables the use of crude sample preparation, simplifying the overall testing process. Our testing kits include PureMolecular’s proprietary suite of oligonucleotides and RNA extraction materials, along with highly efficient and robust NASBA reagents.

Buy Grouperchek Online!


Point of Use GrouperChek™ Testing Kits

    • Detects imposter Grouper
  • Performed by the customer
  • Identifies Grouper species based on the FDA Seafood List


Result provided in approximately 1 hour

We supply the customer with GrouperCheck™ real-time NASBA testing kits which contain enough reagents and supplies to process up to 8 individual fish samples. The tests are performed on either our AmpliFire™ handheld sensor, or compatible lab-based instrumentation owned by the customer.

$299 per testing kit (reagents for 8 samples — $37.40 /sample)

Detectable grouper Species using GrouperChek NASBA assay

Scientific Name Common Name
Aethaloperca rogaa Redmouth Grouper
Anyperodon leucogrammicus Slender Grouper
Cephalopholis sonnerati Tomato Hind
Dermatolepis inermis Marbled Grouper
Epinephelus poecilonotus Dot-dash Grouper
Epinephelus acanthistius Gulf Coney
Epinephelus aeneus White Grouper
Epinephelus amblycephalus Banded Grouper
Epinephelus areolatus Persian Grouper
Epinephelus bleekeri Dusty Tail Grouper
Epinephelus chlorostigma Brownspotted Rockcod
Epinephelus coioides Orange-spotted Grouper
Epinephelus cyanopodus Speckled Blue Grouper
Epinephelus diacanthus Spinycheek Grouper
Epinephelus fasciatus Blacktip Grouper
Epinephelus fuscoguttatus Mottled Grouper
Epinephelus guttatus Red Hind
Epinephelus heniochus Bridled Grouper
Epinephelus hexagonatus Starspotted Grouper
Epinephelus itajara Goliath
Epinephelus lanceolatus Giant Grouper
Epinephelus latifasciatus Striped Grouper
Epinephelus macrospilos Snubnose Grouper
Epinephelus malabaricus Malabar Grouper
Epinephelus marginatus Dusky Grouper
Epinephelus merra Speckled Dwarf Grouper
Epinephelus miliaris Netfin Grouper
Epinephelus morio Red Grouper
Epinephelus morrhua Comet Grouper
Epinephelus multinotatus White-blotched Grouper
Epinephelus mystacinus Misty Grouper
Epinephelus nigritus Warsaw Grouper
Epinephelus niveatus Snowy Grouper
Epinephelus polyphekadion Camouflage Grouper
Epinephelus radiatus Oblique-banded Grouper
Epinephelus rivulatus Halfmoon Grouper
Epinephelus sexfasciatus Sixbar Grouper
Epinephelus striatus Nassau Grouper
Epinephelus tauvina Greasy Rockcod
Epinephelus undulosus Wavy Lined Grouper
Hyporthodus flavolimbatus Yellowedge Grouper
Hyporthodus niphobles Star-studded grouper
Mycteroperca bonaci Black Grouper
Mycteroperca interstitialis Yellowmouth Grouper
Mycteroperca jordani Gulf Grouper
Mycteroperca microlepis Gag
Mycteroperca phenax Scamp
Mycteroperca rubra Comb Grouper
Mycteroperca tigris Tiger Grouper
Mycteroperca venenosa Yellowfin Grouper
Mycteroperca xenarcha Broomtail Grouper

NASBA Details

Spectrecology NASBA assays

The magic starts with careful selection of the sequences of the RNA to be targeted. Sequences that are unique for each target in the set of targets are selected. These can be specific for species, or for strains with particular genes for drug resistance or other expressions. Lysing agents for sample dissolution are designed as well as the molecular beacons to work with the oligo’s.  The assays are tested and optimized and appropriate packaging is developed for the anticipated application and the end user.


NASBA Applications

Our typical applications involve testing for a limited suite of potential species or strains of living materials. Our portable Amplifire NASBA isothermal cycler has room for 8 pcr reaction tubes. The tests can be designed with up to 3 colors of fluorescent labels in a single tube — meaning we can measure up to 24 RNA targets from a single sample.

We have patented technology to detect several noxious microbes using NASBA amplification.

  • Enterovirus (human pathogen)
  • Norovirus (food-borne pathogen)
  • Karenia brevis (Harmful algal blooms)

We are also working with clients on assays in other application areas including authentication, detection, food safety.



The AmpliFire by Douglas Scientific is a portable point of use instrument optimized for isothermal chemistry with the capability to process eight samples simultaneously. With data storage, touch screen interface and easy analysis, the AmpliFire allows you to bring your lab anywhere!

Buy Amplfire Online!


AmpliFire® Specifications

Dimensions: W:21.0cm (8.3in) H:9.1cm (3.6in) D:30.9cm (12.2in)
Mass: 2.2kg (4.9lbs)
Power Supply: 12Vdc
Full Working Load: 2.8Amps
Battery Type: Lithium Ion
Battery Charge Life: 4 to 6 hours
Storage Capacity: 1,000 runs (8,000 samples)
Display: Real time data display with end point outcomes
Transfer: USB 2.0
Well Capacity: .2mL 8 tube PCR strips
Fluorescence 3 Channel Excitation / Detection:

  • Channel 1 = 495nm / 520nm
  • Channel 2 = 535nm / 556nm
  • Channel 3 = 590nm / 610nm

Scan Interval: 10 seconds
Reaction Volume: 25µL to 50µL
Reaction Control Temperature: 45C to 80C

7” Resistive Touch
Capable of wireless mouse or keyboard connection
Windows® Embedded Compact 7 (C7P)
CE (2004/108 EC EMC Directive)
Storage: -29C to 60C (-20F to 140F)
Operating: 0C to 40C (32F to 105F)


Spectrecology NASBA Amplifire

The Great Plate Anomaly


The Great Plate Anomaly - Spectrecology

“The Great Plate Count Anomaly.” About 100 times more cells will be observed microscopically than colonies counted on the Petri dish (Fig. 1). This simple result is one of the most profound puzzles in microbiology, and one of the most significant unsolved questions in biology. — This is a great article by Kim Lewis in the blog Small Things Considered. Click on the link below to read the article.

Small Things Considered