SynbiCITE and Imperial College London choose SAS® to spur synthetic biology industry

Data Knowledge Centre will conduct genetics research to combat everything from diseases to environmental issues

SynbiCITE and the Centre for Synthetic Biology & Innovation at Imperial College London have chosen analytics leader SAS to produce a Data Knowledge Centre for the storage, processing, analysis and predictive modeling of the data generated at the new London DNA Foundry.

The Foundry manufactures genetic components to tackle everything from global warming to vaccines. The program will help to transform leading-edge academic research into commercial outputs for the emerging synthetic biology industry.

Expected to develop into a multibillion-dollar industry, synthetic biology uses engineering principles to design and construct new biological parts, devices and systems. These can help tackle major global sustainability concerns, including environmental health, energy shortages, pollution, hunger and disease. In 2013 the UK government named synthetic biology one of the eight great technologies in which the UK is set to be a global leader.

Imperial College London is a leading science-based institution and host to SynbiCITE, the Innovation and Knowledge Centre for Synthetic Biology. SynbiCITE was funded by the UK government to drive commercialization of synthetic biology and effectively create an industry from scratch. It uses biology to create substitutes for a wide range of items, such as malaria medicines, rubber substitutes for tires and crop feeds.

"This is an exciting and hugely important new field which has attracted support from the UK government as well as a number of international bodies," said Dr. Steve Chambers, CEO of SynbiCITE. “The global synthetic biology market is estimated to exceed 38.7 billion pounds [more than US$50 billion] by 2020 and can have a significant impact on the economy, growth and jobs over the coming years.

"SAS was chosen on the basis of its leading reputation in health and life sciences, and to drive robustness and repeatability in translating academic research into industry-class outputs. These outputs will help development of new technology opportunities that can be exploited by new and existing businesses across many fields."

The solution from SAS extends from data management to use of data visualization technology, such as SAS Visual Analytics and SAS Visual Statistics.

"SAS has always supported mature companies with mature business problems," said Mark Wilkinson, Regional Vice President for Northern Europe at SAS. "This deal is significant, as we are supporting an early-stage organization that is looking to grow an entirely new and ground-breaking industry. We are fortunate to be the start of something that is intended to be a multibillion-dollar industry that can address major concerns about global sustainability when it comes to use of increasingly scarce natural resources."

About SynbiCITE

SynbiCITE is a pioneering Innovation and Knowledge Centre (IKC) dedicated to promoting the adoption and use of synthetic biology by industry. The IKC is an internationally recognized lead centre in industrializing synthetic biology research, giving the UK a globally renowned national resource of interacting partners from across the UK’s leading academic institutions, industry and business.

SynbiCITE is focused at Imperial College London and is, with our partners, accelerating the commercialization of world-class science and the emerging technologies encompassed by synthetic biology into new products, tools, processes and services. Our overall aim is to grow UK industry in the sector and improve synthetic biology, using industry to achieve significant economic impact, generate wealth for the companies, generate skilled workers and create jobs.

About SAS

SAS is a global leader in data and AI. With SAS software and industry-specific solutions, organizations transform data into trusted decisions. SAS gives you THE POWER TO KNOW®.

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