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The State of Synthetic Biology

Last month an interesting article got posted at CBinsights about the current state of synthetic biology that I didn't have time to write about until now. What I really like:

  1. Even the superficial overview teaser article is much more comprehensive than my review of companies in the field which actually had a slightly different focus.
  2. It is also more up-to-date.

Reading the article, I am very excited because there are so many interesting companies to be excited about like for example:

Benchling - a company that builds dna managing, and editing software.
GAE Enzymes - a company that wants to make enzymes more rapidly
Glowee -  a company that wants to make biological lighting
Gincko Bioworks -  a microbe design company
Twist - a DNA synthesis company

One interesting thing was who was not mentioned in the public article: Amyris. I guess this has to do with the fact that Amyris is no longer new and "exciting", but a known quantity. I think this is positive because it means that Amyris is no longer really a start-up company :-) Hopefully, they will be the first to turn profitable to show the rest of the field that it is possible!

I think Todd Slaby, a good friend of mine, put it really nicely when he wrote the following:
Here's an interesting article that just scratches the surface of the landmark shift we are all just beginning to experience in how R&D is organized and leveraged. In many ways, Synthetic Biology isn't a collection of tools as much as it is a mindset that draws heavily from 20th Century Total Quality-inspired approaches to manufacturing. Early adopters intuitively understood that. It's gratifying to see so many others discovering value in it, as well.
I recommend that you go over to the article and read it directly!

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