Synthetic biology company moves to Cambridge business park in the UK


UK-based gene synthesis specialist Evonetix is developing a desktop DNA synthesis platform based on a proprietary silicon chip

Photo as seen on company website

Evonetix has moved to Coldham's Business Park, Cambridge, UK. The new facility will enable continued growth as the company continues its mission to develop a desktop DNA synthesis platform based on its proprietary silicon chip.

The synthetic biology company developing a desktop platform for scalable, high-fidelity and rapid gene synthesis, was previously based at Chesterford Research Park. The move means that the UK-based company now occupies 15,000 sqft at Coldham's Business Park, comprising 8,000 sqft of fully fitted and equipped state-of-the-art laboratory space and 7,000 sqft of office space all under one roof.

This enables the company's teams of physicists, electronics and software engineers, chemists, biologists and molecular biologists to work more closely together in a multidisciplinary approach to deliver the Evonetix mission.

Headcount currently stands at 40, including 26 PhD biologists, physicists, chemists and engineers, and the company is currently looking to recruit further staff, including biophysicists, electronics and protein engineers.

The company's silicon chip is made by MEMS processing and controls the synthesis of DNA at many thousands of independently controlled reaction sites or "pixels" on the chip surface in a highly parallel fashion. This is compatible with both chemical and enzymatic DNA synthesis. Following synthesis, strands are assembled on-chip into double-stranded DNA in a process that identifies and removes errors, enabling accuracy, scale and speed that is several orders of magnitude better than conventional approaches.

Dr Tim Brears, Evonetix CEO, said: "Synthetic biology has the potential to solve some of the world's most intractable problems, but we require innovation in gene synthesis to accelerate progress. Our new office and lab space will enable integration of our teams of specialists to support the development and delivery of our highly parallel desktop platform, which will be available to every researcher to accelerate their ability to use biology on a scale not currently possible."

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