In March 2023, the White House announced a $7.8 million budget for the National Cancer Institute (NCI). A portion of the investment will support precision medicine to develop targeted treatments, improve cancer prevention, early detection, and survivorship, and speed progress on some of the deadliest and rare cancers, including childhood cancers.
Precision medicine relies on understanding the genetics and biology of various diseases by acquiring genetic information (genome), biological samples, and other information from a large population — the Precision Medicine Initiative involves sampling a cohort of at least 1 million volunteers.
Genomic sequencing technology providers, such as Complete Genomics, will play a critical role in advancing precision medicine and opening new opportunities in health and healthcare at an unprecedented scale.
Genomic Sequencing: Unlock the Future of Health
Our DNA consists of nucleotides (adenine, thymine, cytosine, and guanine). The different combinations result in our individual, unique genetic code, which contains the instructors for the body’s development, functioning, and maintenance.
Genomic sequencing is a laboratory method for determining an individual’s genetic makeup. Scientists can derive insights into the genetic variations responsible for health and disease to advance disease prevention, diagnosis, and treatment strategies.
Moreover, results from genomic sequencing can help predict and prevent diseases or identify the most appropriate drug for individual patients. Doctors can also learn if a newborn may be predisposed to certain conditions to perform early intervention or select the healthiest embryos for in vitro fertilization to achieve the best outcomes.
Genomic sequencing doesn’t stop at improving healthcare and disease treatment. It also helps us understand the genomic programs of thousands of other crucial species to inform advancements in agriculture and the green economy.
But to realize the promise of genomic sequencing, we must analyze millions of samples — and account for the costs involved in these substantial initiatives.
In 2003, Scientists from six countries mapped the first human genome at a cost of nearly $3 billion. In 2010, Complete Genomics introduced massively parallel DNA sequencing with DNA nanoarrays, reducing the cost to $5,000 per genome. In 2023, the company broke another boundary with its sub-$100 genome sequencing technology — a remarkable achievement on multiple fronts.
Low-Cost Genomics Sequencing Delivers Widespread Benefits
Science is only one part of medical advancement. The barrier often lies in the high cost of new technologies. To reap the benefits of genomics sequencing, we must make routine whole human genome sequencing (hWGS) accessible and affordable.
The lower cost of genomics sequencing will lead to many new clinical applications and improve human health through genomics research. During the past 20 years, genetic testing, genetic diagnosis, and gene therapy have become less costly, while their application has expanded to support clinical disease diagnosis and treatment.
According to Data Bridge Market Research, the North American next-generation sequencing (NGS) market is expected to gain market growth between 2022 to 2029, driven by the decreased cost of genetic sequencing per base.
The affordability will make sequencing-based health monitoring and disease prevention at the molecular level available to more people. The accessibility will also help accelerate scientific breakthroughs and the development of precision medicine by making the technology available to more research facilities.
The reduced cost will help us improve health equity and support accurate disease diagnostics to save lives, improve treatment outcomes, and extend healthy living. It will also make genetic screening and counseling available to underserved communities to reduce the risks of genetic diseases in the population.
Complete Genomics Pioneers Low-Cost, Accurate Sequencing Technology
Founded in 2005 in Silicon Valley, Complete Genomics has been at the forefront of a revolution in DNA sequencing technology, enabling groundbreaking advancements in personalized medicine, agriculture, and other critical sectors.
It drives genomics forward with complete sequencing solutions that empower its customers and partners (e.g., research institutions) with the unlimited potential of genetic sequencing for research, health, and industrial applications.
In 2023, the company invented a high throughput sequencer (DNBSEQ-T20×2RS*) that reduced the cost of genome sequencing to an unprecedented sub-$100 level. This is a dramatic breakthrough compared with a much higher price tag associated with other competitors in the industry.
The technology will become a critical force in driving the expansion of the global genetic industry, accelerate our understanding of the human genome, and advance the medical application of genetic sequencing. In short, it will fundamentally reshape the biotech industry. Complete Genomics lately won 2023 R&D 100 Awards for this cutting-edge product.
“With our affordable sub $1/Gb cost of sequencing, many new applications will be open, making sequencing-based health monitoring and disease prevention at the molecular level accessible for all,” says Dr. Radoje Drmanac, co-founder and chief scientific officer of Complete Genomics and inventor of the DNA nanoball-based sequencing (DNBSEQ) technology.
“We proved through biochemistry, heavy bioinformatics, and analytics that we can use short reads to achieve the high genome sequence quality required without cutting corners. We are leading with the sub-hundred-dollar genome and devoted to becoming the first to get to a $10 genome.”
Beyond Life Sciences: Investing in the Local Community
Complete Genomics has a long history of partnering with companies in California and supporting the local community. It has continued to expand in the San Francisco Bay Area with an estimated CAPEX of several millions of dollars while many technology companies in the Bay Area reduced their workforce; the company welcomed 100+ new full-time employees as of July 2023. It plans to hire over 40 more employees to fill positions in research and development, business development, sales, field support, QA, manufacturing, and operation.
Complete Genomics also partners with various California-based companies. Invivoscribe, a vertically-integrated biotechnology company, has developed biomarker tests on the company’s platform for oncology and cancer research. AccuraGen, a medical diagnostics company, used its Minimal Residual Disease (MRD) assays for its research.
Additionally, Complete Genomics has made several contributions to local organizations, including $50,000 to the California-based non-profit Cancer Commons. It also inspires next generation at the Research Symposium at Harker School, a top Silicon Valley private school, to spark the curiosity and imagination of the attending students with cutting-edge biotechnology education. Moreover, Complete Genomics is exclusively announcing its plan to develop a San Francisco based manufacturing facility and a customer experience center on the east coast of the United States.
Complete Genomics will remain a critical player in our community and the medical and life science sector thanks to its mission to advance genomics education and research on cancer care.
* For Research Use Only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures.
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