BGI buy PacBio RS II and upgrade their partnership with QIAGEN.

The world’s largest genomic organisation, BGI, have made a couple of important decisions to help bolster their services. They have just purchased their first PacBio RS II, with plans to purchase additional units to integrate Single Molecule, Real-Time Sequencing into their global service business.

“The de novo genome services offered by BGI will be supported by SMRT sequencing   technology to take advantage of its long reads and improved accuracy of assembly,” said Dr. Wang Jun, CEO of BGI. “The PacBio platform is ideal for complex genomes, such as those that are highly repetitive or hybrid. With the PacBio RS II we expect to meet our goal of delivering only complete genomes to our customers, and providing the best possible reference genomes for plants, animals and humans.”

BGI will be pleased with their choice, and it is also a great affirmation of PacBio’s status in the sequencing market. Michael Hunkapiller, President and CEO of Pacific Biosciences, commented, “It’s a great validation to us that the world’s leading and largest sequencing operation has adopted PacBio technology. BGI is also a leader in sequencing data analysis, so we are delighted that more SMRT Sequencing data will be in their hands to work with and hopefully develop additional tools to help realize the full value of the data.” 

BGI’s customers in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, will also be happy to hear that the company will now provide QIAGEN’s Ingenuity Variant Analysis in integrated bioinformatics for sequencing services customers. Data generated from samples will be delivered through Ingenuity Variant Analysis’s secure, cloud-based, environment and give access to various gene variant data and genomic interpretation applications.

“We are very pleased to expand QIAGEN’s relationship with BGI, the global leader in sequencing services. Integrating Ingenuity Variant Analysis into BGI’s highly reliable sequencing services will enable clients to accelerate workflows. They’ll be able to transform large quantities of genomic data into valuable molecular insights for research or clinical applications,” said Laura Furmanski, Head of QIAGEN’s Bioinformatics Business Area. “Bioinformatics solutions from QIAGEN are growing rapidly as scientists and healthcare professionals increasingly use genomic information to guide research and provide precise diagnosis for medical decision-making. We are committed to working with leading organizations such as BGI to make these improvements in life possible.”

Yingrui Li, Chief Scientist of BGI, said: “We welcome this opportunity to expand our relationship with QIAGEN for the benefit of BGI collaborators around the world. Coupling BGI’s world-class sequencing with the deep bioinformatics of Ingenuity Variant Analysis will give researchers an enhanced, integrated way to seamlessly move quickly from raw data to valuable insights.”

Between BGI and WuXi, there is an impressive strength growing in China’s genomic services market. The growth of genomics in China will be very interesting to observe over the coming years. Outside of providing services, there is also some very eye-catching research being published which suggest that the country is keen to innovate and lead in science as well as business.