Synthetic DNA is about to take a leap forward. A French start-up company, soberly called DNA Script, will soon market a 3D printer that will generate personalized DNA sequences in “just a few hours”.
“This DNA printer, the first of its kind, allows researchers to write DNA as easily as they can read it,” said Thomas Ybert, president and co-founder of DNA Script.
To reach the market, the startup born in 2014 in Paris began to attract investors this year and has already raised 35 million euros last May. The program for the coming months: the implementation of a beta test in several partner laboratories.
Going beyond diagnostic testing
During the pandemic, DNA Script saw its activity skyrocket. The start-up is working on diagnostic tests, allowing it to continue working on its future technologies. In addition, in parallel with its 3D printer, DNA Script is also working on solutions to store DNA information without consuming too much energy.
Synthetic DNA would be the most sophisticated alternative solution to conventional data center storage. To do this, the implementation uses “enzyme catalysts, as opposed to traditional chemical catalysts,” he explained, adding that this “makes DNA synthesis faster, more efficient and easier.
The ability to read and ” write” these DNA sequences could take DNA Script to an area much appreciated by : “in case of infectious disease caused by viral agents or bacteria, it is essential to quickly identify the pathogen that causes the infection …” , a means of “developing specific vaccines for a virus but also for each patient” .
In addition to its first round of funding, DNA Script also joined a US program, the Molecular Coding Consortium, which includes Harvard University and the Broad Institute, allowing it to invest an additional $23 million.
The start moved to San Francisco, its second office in addition to Paris.
For example, your 3D printer with customized DNA sequences called “Syntax” could be marketed in the United States, as well as in France, Germany, Switzerland and possibly England. The launch is planned for 2022.