Integrated DNA Technologies, the world’s largest manufacturer of nucleic acids, has announced the launch of a new grant program specifically aimed at supporting synthetic biology startups. The grant is dedicated to enabling research and development early stage companies by supplying the most important raw material of synthetic biology: DNA.
The winner of IDT’s Synthetic Biology Grant Program will receive 100,000 base pairs of DNA from the company’s gBlocks® Gene Fragments product line, a $14,900 value. gBlocks® are double-stranded segments of DNA ranging between approximately 125 to 3000 base pairs in length. They are a versatile resource for companies across multiple synbio sub-disciplines, from health and medicine to biomanufacturing. IDT recognizes that the current high price of DNA synthesis for gene-length fragments often represents a heavy burden for startups and hopes to lower those barriers for a few special companies wielding world-changing platforms.
In addition to naming a first-place winner, the grant program will also name a runner-up who will receive 50,000 base pairs of gBlocks®, a $7,450 value. Both winner and runner-up will have the opportunity to receive their winnings in the form of other synthetic biology products of equivalent value among IDT’s vast offerings.
Grant Winners will Also Receive Opportunities with SynBioBeta
Those selected as winners of the grant will not only receive IDT products, but will be provided additional opportunities for exposure through SynBioBeta. The grant winner and runner-up will both be the subject of featured articles published on SynBioBeta’s website and the grant winner will be invited to speak at SynBioBeta SF 2017, their annual conference in October at Mission Bay Conference Center in San Francisco.
“IDT is very excited to be launching this grant and to be working with the biotech community. We’re also very happy to be partnered with an organization like SynBioBeta, who has a very good history working with this community,” said IDT Product Manager William Hazel. “We’ve seen a lot of very exciting things come out of this community in recent years and hope this grant can assist companies that are looking to do great things in the world.”
The Synthetic Biology Grant Program is not IDT’s first move to change the world for the better. In 2015, the DNA giant rolled out its Sustainability Award, a yearly grant of $14,000 of product credits given to a research team pursuing breakthrough solutions in the area of biodiversity. IDT already has a presence in the synthetic biology community through its Platinum sponsorship of the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) Competition, providing up to 20,000 base pairs of its gBlocks® Gene Fragments to each of the teams who participate from around the globe each year.
Details and How to Apply
Is your startup interested in applying to win the IDT Synthetic Biology Grant Program? More information and the application can be found here.
Qualifying companies must be based in the United States, have been in business for less than five years and have fewer than 50 employees. The winner and runner-up will be responsible for travel and admission expenses to SynBioBeta SF 2017. If unable to attend, the winner will still be featured in a profile presented by IDT at the conference.