Molecular Assemblies Announces $12.2 M Series A Financing to Advance Enzymatic DNA Synthesis
SAN DIEGO, October 1, 2019 — Molecular Assemblies, Inc., today announced that it has raised a $12.2 million Series A financing led by iSelect Fund and joined by existing investors, Agilent Technologies, Alexandria Venture Investments, and Keshif Ventures. The proceeds of the financing will be used to advance the company’s proprietary enzymatic DNA synthesis technology to power DNA-based products in synthetic biology. Enzymatic DNA synthesis can write long, pure DNA, which is required to unleash the full potential of synthetic biology applications, such as personalized medicines (including CAR-T cell therapies and CRISPR gene editing), and advanced agricultural and industrial products, through gene development and DNA-based data storage.
“We are thankful to our progressive investors who see the massive potential of our proprietary enzymatic DNA synthesis technology in revolutionizing many industries,” Michael J. Kamdar, President and CEO of Molecular Assemblies. “Our ability to reliably, affordably, and sustainably produce long, high-quality DNA can accelerate life science research and transform the information storage industry by enabling integrated systems that can write and read DNA data.”
Synthetic DNA is used in a wide range of applications, including life science research, biologic therapeutics and diagnostics, data storage, nanotechnology, and industrial processes (including agriculture, plastics, fermentation, and even leather production). However, the full potential of synthetic DNA has not been realized due to the cumbersome process of chemical DNA synthesis involving polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The three-decade-old method for chemically synthesizing DNA is inherently limited to short DNA sequences, requires extensive post-synthesis processing, and uses hazardous chemicals.
To overcome these hurdles, scientists at Molecular Assemblies have pioneered a two-step enzymatic DNA synthesis process that can deliver highly-pure, sequence-specific DNA on-demand, without a template, and can scale to longer DNA sequences. This proprietary process uses aqueous, non-toxic reagents and requires minimal post-synthesis purification and processing. Molecular Assemblies’ enzymatic approach is designed to reliably, affordably, and sustainably produce long, high-quality DNA, optimized for life science and data storage applications.
“Enzymatic DNA synthesis is the optimal way to create a cost-effective, sustainable, and scalable integrated system that stores and reads information in DNA,” said Mike Kime, managing director, iSelect Fund. “With a proprietary technology position, Molecular Assemblies’ novel enzymatic DNA synthesis platform has the potential to fundamentally transform how we create DNA on-demand to enable breakthroughs in life sciences, information storage, synthetic biology, and electronics.”
Last year, Molecular Assemblies was the first industry group to disclose the ability to store and retrieve digital information in DNA using enzymatic synthesis. Bill Efcavitch, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Molecular Assemblies, will be speaking on this topic more at the DNA Data Storage panel taking place today from 2:30pm to 3:15pm PT at SynBioBeta 2019: The Global Synthetic Biology Summit in San Francisco.
Front Line Genomics has an interview with Michael Kamdar, CEO of Molecular Assemblies, coming to the website soon. He will discuss the applications of DNA enzymatic synthesis for DNA data storage, personalised medicine and biotechnology.