Home » Emerging technologies » DNA synthesis » News Digest #223 – Faster DNA synthesis, Benchling raises $14.5M, CRISPR patents, and more

News Digest #223 – Faster DNA synthesis, Benchling raises $14.5M, CRISPR patents, and more


Hi all,

Join me in congratulating Benchling for raising $14.5 million in Series B funding to accelerate biological engineering with its unified cloud solution for LIMS, sample tracking, and workflow management. Amyris also announced a $50 million agreement for a project consortium in Europe – the largest biotechnology grant ever awarded in Portugal. In the markets, Gevo stock soared more than 72% Tuesday, after closing up a stunning 262% on Monday, after the EPA announced the approval of isobutanol at a 16% blend level in gasoline.

In science and technology, a JBEI spin-out announced a new way to enzymatically synthesize DNA that promises to be faster, cheaper, and more accurate than current state-of-the-art. Sebastian Palluk and Dan Arlow (pictured below) are commercializing the technology through their start-up, Ansa Biotechnologies.

CRISPR Therapeutics, Intellia Therapeutics and Caribou Biosciences announced the grant of a U.S. patent for CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing. The Japanese Patent Office also granted Charpentier, UC Berkeley, and University of Vienna its first Japanese patent with broad claims covering the CRISPR/Cas9 technology.

This week, in a story from the UK’s national centre for the commercialization of synthetic biology (SynbiCITE), we take a look at how Open Cell is transforming shipping containers into lab space in London. Come hear the story of how it all began with Co-founder Thomas Meany at SynBioBeta 2018, and check out these other recently confirmed speakers:

Also speaking at SynBioBeta 2018 will be John Nicols, CEO of Codexis, who we spoke with this week about how leading pharma companies like Merck and GSK are proactively exploiting the power of synthetic biology to create new value, and how Codexis itself is changing what’s possible in protein engineering and protein therapies.

Finally, we explore how Twist Bioscience is developing improved methods for sequencing just the coding segments of DNA that can greatly reduce costs and wait times for screening and diagnosis for a range of genetic diseases.

We’re pleased to announce a special webinar in partnership with SynbiCITE on global developments in the synthetic biology industry on Thursday, July 5. The webinar will also focus on business development opportunities at the SynBioBeta Global Summit (October 1-3) and a special SynbiCITE UK Showcase on October 1, both in San Francisco.


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New platform will help create designer human proteins in the lab
See how algae could change our world
Kraig Biocraft Laboratories deploys new spider silk DNA synthesis methodology
AMSilk and German universities develop a vaccine based on spider silk

All the News

Oxitec to apply new generation of self-limiting mosquito technology to malaria-spreading mosquitoes (Press release)

US military wants to know what synthetic-biology weapons could look like (MIT Tech Review)

New National Academies of Sciences report: Biodefense in the Age of Synthetic Biology

Synthace named a 2018 Cool Vendor in Life Sciences by Gartner (Press release)

GenScript supports the development of a novel HIV vaccine (Press release)

Lumen wins triple funding boost from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to advance development of low-cost therapeutics for newborns and infants (Press release)

RoosterBio becomes industry partner in NSF-funded public-private Cell Manufacturing Technologies Initiative (Press release)

Vaccinating fish through feed: MicroSynbiotiX shows feasibility of microalgae platform (Feed Navigator)

AgBiome awarded multi-year grant for biological nematicide project (Press release)

Who’s Hiring?

Biotechnology Policy Analyst, J. Craig Venter Institute, San Diego, CA

Event Producer and Marketing Manager – SynBioBeta

Executive Assistant – SynBioBeta

Sales Support Specialist – SynBioBeta

Associate Creative Producer: Video, Visual & Editorial Content – SynBioBeta

Fermentation Scientist: DNA Script, Paris, France

Synthetic biologist/Protein engineer: XENO Cell Innovations, Pilsen, Czech Republic

To feature your job here, please get in touch

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