Roswell Biotechnologies Awarded Government Contract For DNA Digital Data Storage

Roswell Biotechnologies, Inc., the pioneer in the development of a molecular electronics platform for DNA sequencing, today announced that it is a member of a team led by Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) that has been awarded a US government contract worth up to $25 million to develop a sequencing technology capable of reading data stored in DNA at speeds up to 10 TB per day, or more than 400x times the speed of currently available sequencing technologies. The award comes from the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity’s (IARPA) Molecular Information Storage (MIST) program, IARPA which supports the development of new technologies of interest to the agencies of the US Intelligence Community, including the CIA, FBI, NSA, and the Department of State.

“This IARPA program confirms our vision that ultra-fast ultra-low-cost DNA sequencing will open up major new sectors of the DNA economy outside of health-care,” said Roswell President and Chief Executive Officer, Paul Mola. “While we are focused on delivering the $100, 1-hour Genome for Precision Medicine, we are extremely excited to play a critical role in the future of data storage, which is foundational to today’s economy and to the future of information sharing.”

The government contract is part of a comprehensive 4-year program to demonstrate the feasibility of using DNA as a data storage medium for Exabyte-scale data storage. The GTRI led program also involves the University of Washington and Microsoft for the system architecture, data analysis, and coding algorithms and Twist Bioscience for the DNA synthesis portion. The award to Roswell supports development of a high-speed, low-cost, and energy-efficient platform for reading data that has been stored in DNA.

“We are very happy to work with Roswell to increase the DNA data storage read throughput while making it more robust,” said Karin Strauss, principal research manager, Microsoft Research. “Developing encoding algorithms for new DNA reading technologies is an exciting goal, and will further our efforts to establish DNA as a suitable data storage method in the future.”

“The DNA reading goal of IARPA is far beyond the limits of existing sequencing technologies,” said Roswell Chief Scientific Officer, Barry Merriman. “The program goal is the equivalent of delivering a $10 genome. Our unique Molecular Electronics chip technology was specifically designed to achieve these lofty goals, and we are excited that this contract allows us to accelerate demonstration of such performance.-PR Newswire

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