Investing in applications of DNA and RNA science
Detection & Sequencing
Reading Nucleic Acids
Accurately detecting and decoding DNA and RNA sequences is invaluable information in an array of medical, environmental, and industrial contexts. The pioneering technological developments of the worldwide detection and sequencing communities have spawned innumerable contributions to fundamental scientific knowledge and also direct applications in disease prediction, diagnosis, food safety, forensics, and agriculture. This trend is accelerating due to exponential cost reductions to sequence DNA and RNA and the miniaturization and democratization of the technologies. Rapid, affordable, and point of care reading of nucleic acids promises creating substantial global intrinsic value and, more importantly, will save untold lives across the world.
Synthesis & Design
Cells as Factories
The cell is a remarkable factory for the production of new things from trees, hearts, and brains to flowers, bones, and the marvelous colors of nature. The purposeful design of the DNA and RNA blueprints for these creations to produce desired cellular outputs is the raison d'être of synthetic biology. When the production of cheap, synthetic nucleic acids and the ability to easily edit them is coupled to massively parallel computing, robotic liquid handling systems, and machine learning the result is vastly accelerated design, build, test cycles for prototyping cellular factories. Computer aided DNA and RNA design, low-cost synthetic nucleic acids, and engineered cells will unleash a range of new materials, with applications far outside medicine alone.
Therapeutics & Vaccines
Nucleic Acid Medicines
DNA and RNA therapies offer unprecedented opportunities to combat previously intractable challenges in global health and genetic disease. The strategies and chemistries employed are manifold. Anti-sense oligonucleotides effectively turn off toxic genes or skip faulty instructions in others. Messenger RNA therapeutics offer a scalable template for cellular synthesis of nearly any protein and holds astonishing promise as life-saving vaccines. Gene therapy provides the most elegant and theoretically curative approach through direct editing, replacement, or permanent insertion of new DNA into the patient genome. While the challenges of creating DNA and RNA therapies are immense, requiring continued innovation to improve stability and delivery and reduce immunogenicity, the future benefits are infinite.