FLANDERS, BELGIUM AND SAN DIEGO— August 22, 2017 — SGI-DNA Inc., a Synthetic Genomics Inc. (SGI) company, and VIB, a Belgian life science research institute, today announced that VIB will become the first institute in Europe to integrate the BioXp™ 3200 System in its workflows as part of its vision for adopting breakthrough technologies. The BioXp™ 3200 System is the world’s first benchtop automated genomic workstation that rapidly prints high-quality, double-stranded DNA fragments and clones into any vector in an overnight run. With the BioXp™ 3200 System, VIB will be accelerating turnaround time for generating custom DNA for genomic research.
VIB’s Technology Watch Initiative implements new, emerging, and disruptive technologies into its laboratories and research facilities. Active since 2008, the Technology Watch program evaluates strategic technology investment opportunities and provides the funding to secure prototype instruments and early-stage technologies from high-potential fields such as Synthetic Biology, CRISPR, and single-cell analysis. The BioXp™ 3200 System will be placed in the lab of Thomas Jacobs, Ph.D., a VIB scientist in the VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology, who is developing and optimizing plant genome editing through the use of CRISPR/Cas systems.
“The BioXp™ 3200 System will fundamentally change the way our research group approaches cloning. Not only will it greatly reduce our turnaround time for cloning projects, but also will hopefully open up new ways to test the gene editing systems we are developing,” says Dr. Jacobs.
“By automating rapid DNA synthesis, this will put VIB in a competitive position, allowing researchers to focus their time on the crucial scientific questions rather than on routine lab work,” adds Halina Novak, Ph.D., Technology Watch program manager at VIB.
Scientists are able to specifically design and clone genes with the BioXp™ System to answer key questions in their function in biological systems. With the BioXp™ 3200 System, researchers do not need a template to obtain a gene of interest. Genes are built in silico, designed with sequence modifications to address the specific research.
“Automating gene synthesis promotes scientific discovery and advancement,” says Nathan Wood, president of SGI-DNA. “The global expansion of the BioXp™ 3200 System, notably to one of Europe’s most innovative research institutes, will help to facilitate further genomic breakthroughs in life science research.”
More information is available at sgidna.com/bxp3200
Basic research in life sciences is VIB’s raison d’être. VIB is pushing the boundaries of molecular mechanisms and how they rule living organisms, such as human beings, animals, plants and microorganisms, while also creating tangible results for the benefit of society. Based on a close partnership with five Flemish universities – Ghent University, KU Leuven, University of Antwerp, Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Hasselt University – and supported by a solid funding program, VIB unites the expertise of 75 research groups in a single institute. VIB’s technology transfer activities translate research results into new economic ventures which, in time, lead to new products that can be used in medicine, agriculture and other applications. VIB also engages actively in the public debate on biotechnology by developing and disseminating a wide range of science-based information about all aspects of biotechnology. More information: www.vib.be.
VIB Tech Watch
Through the strategic application of VIB Tech Watch funds, VIB labs boast groundbreaking new technologies such as those enabling human genome sequencing, bioinformatics, next generation DNA sequencing, and a diverse range of visualization and proteomics technologies. Over the years, Tech Watch has gathered in-depth information about disruptive technologies that could aid VIB scientists, sharing over 100 of these innovations with the entire organization in the last eight years and assisting researchers in obtaining funds to use these technologies to boost research output. VIB’s partnership with SGI-DNA is only one illustration of how the VIB Technology Watch team drives cutting-edge science.
SGI-DNA, a wholly owned subsidiary of Synthetic Genomics Inc., provides genomic solutions to advance scientific discovery. SGI-DNA’s ever expanding suite of products, services, reagents, bioinformatics tools and instrumentation enables scientists to discover, design and build novel solutions for basic research, as well as for biomedical and industrial applications. SGI-DNA’s genomic services include whole genome sequencing, DNA synthesis, library design, bioinformatics, cell engineering, and plasmid DNA cloning and purification. SGI-DNA’s reagents include a complete suite of Gibson Assembly® and Site Directed Mutagenesis kits as well as optimized cell lines. To further enable the synthetic biology workflow, SGI-DNA offers the BioXp™ 3200 System. This fully automated genomics workstation allows the creation of double stranded DNA fragments, automated cloning, as well as Next Generation Sequencing DNA library preparation. Building on scientific breakthroughs from J. Craig Venter, Hamilton Smith, Clyde Hutchison, Daniel Gibson and their teams, SGI-DNA is committed to reducing barriers associated with synthetic biology. More information is available at www.sgidna.com.
About Synthetic Genomics
Synthetic Genomics is programming the operating system of life to create sustainable solutions for humankind’s most pressing issues, from the wellbeing of our population to the health of our planet. With an unmatched understanding of how DNA drives the function of cells — the basic biological units of all living organisms — Synthetic Genomics modifies and writes genomes to enable transformative products in the areas of vaccines, medicines, nutrition, and biotechnology research. In addition to designing novel organisms that overcome fundamental hurdles of scientific research and medicine, Synthetic Genomics pursues partnerships with organizations seeking to dramatically improve upon existing products in energy, health care and other sectors. Continuing its legacy of scientific firsts in genomics and synthetic biology, Synthetic Genomics is harnessing the power of nature to improve quality of life. More information is available at syntheticgenomics.com.Synthetic Genomics Contact
Corporate Communications and Media
Ian Stone, Canale Communications
Liz Liner, Synthetic Genomics
Halina Novak, VIB Tech Watch
+32 9 244 66 11