Press Releases/Twist-2019-April-15

International Genetically Engineered Machine

Twist Bioscience and iGEM Partner to Provide Synthetic DNA for iGEM Competition and Registry

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. and CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – April 15, 2019 – Twist Bioscience Corporation (NASDAQ: TWST), a company enabling customers to succeed through its offering of high-quality synthetic DNA using its silicon platform, and the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) Foundation today announced a collaboration to change the way iGEM Competition teams contribute to the Registry of Standard Biological Parts, a free online database for synthetic biologists.

A standard biological part is a functional unit of DNA that encodes for a specific biological function (such as a response to stimuli, or the synthesis of interesting proteins), and conforms to a construction standard. Parts from the registry can be mixed and matched to build synthetic biology devices and systems. In past years, teams from around the world were required to submit physical samples of their standard biological parts to the Registry as a part of the competition. Now, through this collaboration between Twist and iGEM, competition teams no longer have to factor in the time, effort and resources needed to generate and ship their part samples to the Registry. Importantly, this process ensures the correct parts are delivered to the Registry, eliminating error or duplication.

Instead, by the end of the competition, teams will now submit their part sequences and documentation to the Registry. Twist Bioscience will then synthesize samples of these parts for next year’s competition Registry. This represents a shift from a focus on DNA manipulation to a more impactful focus on discovery, construction, data gathering, and documentation of their designed biological constructs.

Randy Rettberg, president and founder of iGEM, explains, “We all know that in synthetic biology, DNA is more about the information than the molecule. In the future, synthetic biologists will specify the design and order the molecules online. This will be part of a multi-layered industry. This offer from Twist lets iGEM teams live in that future, today.”

The iGEM Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to education and competition, the advancement of synthetic biology, and the development of an open community and collaboration. iGEM runs three main programs: the iGEM Competition - an international team competition made up of predominantly undergraduate students interested in the field of synthetic biology; the Labs Program - a program for academic labs to use the same resources as the competition teams; and the Registry of Standard Biological Parts - a growing collection of genetic parts used for building biological devices and systems.

“The iGEM Competition is the preeminent synthetic biology event of the year, engaging more than 40,000 students worldwide,” said Emily Leproust, Ph.D., CEO and co-founder of Twist Bioscience. “These young minds hold the future solutions for addressing chronic and deadly diseases, providing solutions to improve the environment, and acting globally to benefit humanity. We are continuously inspired by the innovative projects that improve communities and ecosystems around the world, and are proud to support their efforts.”

About iGEM
The iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) Foundation is an independent, non-profit organization that pioneered synthetic biology. iGEM continues to advance the field through education and competition, through the development of an open community, and by building the workforce of the future with industry collaboration. At its core, iGEM is about local people solving local problems everywhere around the world. iGEM's annual student competition is the world’s leading synthetic biology innovation program and a launchpad for the industry's most successful leaders. Each year, the competition brings together over 6,000 people from 40+ countries to push the boundaries of biology as a technology, while challenging teams to create projects that are safe, responsible, and good for the world. Beyond the competition, the After iGEM program offers many opportunities to excite, support, and inspire the 40,000+ iGEMers who are leading synthetic biology at a global scale and working toward a strong, responsible, and visionary synthetic biology industry. For more information, visit

About Twist Bioscience Corporation
Twist Bioscience is a leading and rapidly growing synthetic biology company that has developed a disruptive DNA synthesis platform to industrialize the engineering of biology. The core of the platform is a proprietary technology that pioneers a new method of manufacturing synthetic DNA by “writing” DNA on a silicon chip. Twist is leveraging its unique technology to manufacture a broad range of synthetic DNA-based products, including synthetic genes, tools for next-generation sequencing (NGS) preparation, and antibody libraries for drug discovery and development. Twist is also pursuing longer-term opportunities in digital data storage in DNA and biologics drug discovery. Twist make products for use across many industries including healthcare, industrial chemicals, agriculture and academic research.

Source: BusinessWire