Could these companies unlock biology's potential?

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07/04/2017

A new partnership could help unlock the potential of biology and address many of the challenges facing the modern world.

Cambridge Consultants has joined forces with software company Synthace to promote a new platform for engineering biological systems, which could be a crucial step towards groundbreaking developments such as truly personalised ‘precision’ medicine and the next generation of antibiotics.

The new platform – called Antha – has been developed by UK-based Synthace and is a programming language and operating system for engineering biology. It allows more automated ways of working and opens the door to widespread adoption and implementation of engineering practices in the biotechnology industry. As well as medical breakthroughs, this could also unlock a whole host of novel applications in areas such as consumer products.

“We’re thrilled to be collaborating with Cambridge Consultants,” said Tim Fell, CEO of Synthace.

“Our goal is to help remove some of the manual, and often painstaking, work that scientists undertake in experimentation – and use software and processes which can exponentially accelerate bioscience. Combining our expertise with that of Cambridge Consultants will hopefully speed up the adoption of Antha and demonstrate our commitment to making engineering biology a widespread reality.”

The partnership between the two companies will create a ‘one-stop shop’ for clients to ensure they get the most out of Antha. Cambridge Consultants will provide consultancy services to help with effective implementation of Antha in labs – including process development, protocol development, automation integration and custom equipment development. Synthace will provide the core ‘platform as a service’, maintaining Antha and managing the cloud-hosted infrastructure.

Product design and development firm Cambridge Consultants will also use Antha to run its in-house synthetic biology lab.

“We’re delighted to partner with Synthace and lead the global proliferation of synthetic biology together, while boosting the ever-growing UK scene,” said Richard Hammond, head of synthetic biology at Cambridge Consultants. “We’re also very excited to be using Antha in our own lab to plan and manage our wetware development and show the power of this approach.”


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