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GEN9 Develops Novel Multiplex Synthesis Platform for DNA Assembly

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Gen9 has announced it has developed a novel multiplex DNA assembly approach which scales the manufacture of synthetic DNA by nearly two orders of magnitude. Gen9 has applied this technology to long-length DNA construction, building 50 gene-length DNA constructs simultaneously in a single reaction. Comprising advancements in software, chemistry and biology, multiplexing technology will be applied to Gen9’s BioFab® next-generation DNA synthesis platform over the next 12 months. 

The BioFab® platform is the first and only industrialized, chip-based manufacturing technology for DNA synthesis and assembly. Now, the addition of proprietary multiplexing technology further increases its manufacturing capacity and will decrease costs to a fraction of one penny per base pair when fully implemented. This first-of-its-kind advancement will also narrow the DNA read-write gap, allowing scientists to leverage DNA sequence information to discover the next generation of breakthroughs in therapeutics, biofuels, chemicals and more. 

“Global DNA synthesis capacity is currently limited to hundreds of millions of base pairs of DNA per year. Gen9’s multiplex technology has the potential to scale that to billions of base pairs and to make possible the idea of realizing a $1,000 synthetic genome,” said Joseph Jacobson, co-founder of Gen9 and Associate Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

While manufacture and usage of synthetic genes are growing rapidly, there still remains a massive discrepancy between the annual global capacity for “reading” DNA (sequencing) and “writing” DNA (synthesis), leaving researchers with a challenge in turning the vast information from genome sequencing projects into quickly actionable results. Gen9 is narrowing this gap through massively-parallel DNA manufacture. 

“Our BioFab® platform makes manual, time-consuming PCR cloning methods for working with DNA obsolete. This enables scientists to get to their answers faster by designing, building and testing many sequences at once, rather than serially,” said Devin Leake, Vice President of R&D at Gen9. “And with the addition of multiplexing technology, we will open the doors for all sorts of new uses for DNA, from information storage to counterfeit prevention and data encryption.”