GenScript Develops Chip for DNA Data Storage

OAKLAND, Calif. and PISCATAWAY, N.J. — The biotechnology company GenScript USA is introducing a chip for DNA digital storage.

GenScript debuted its High-Density DNA Synthesis Chip at the Built With Biology conference, according to the company this month.

The chip is designed to allow the synthesis of 8.4 million oligos, with up to 170 bases per oligo. 

The company expects the chip to be commercially available in the second half of 2022.

GenScript believes the marketplace’s data storage capacity is “running out,” and storing data in servers is “unsustainable in the long-term.”

To test the chip’s storage utility, GenScript said researchers encoded 100 Mb of mixed data types in the DNA as well as retrieved the encoded data.

The chip’s active electrode field is set up with a density of over 2.5 million sites per square centimeter, according to GenScript. Each electrode site on the chip can be independently controlled and produce a different oligo sequence at each location. 

The company’s scientists have built pipelines and algorithms for data encoding and decoding, along with error correction.

GenScript is seeking participants for a partnership program to expand the applicability of the data storage platform.

“DNA could be a powerful medium for data storage, given its theoretically limitless storage capacity, stability, and minimal maintenance requirements,” said Cedric Wu, Ph.D., VP, GenScript Innovation Center. 

“However, our inability to quickly generate large numbers of DNA sequences to store new material has hindered its commercial promise.”

Wu said GenScript’s chip addresses DNA digital data storage’s “most vexing challenges.”

Chris Ehrlich
Chris Ehrlich
Chris Ehrlich is the managing editor of several web properties in the TechnologyAdvice network. He has over 20 years of experience delivering content-based results across journalism and communications, including on B2B technologies. As a leader in digital journalism, he’s driven targeted content that resonates with audiences and increases key metrics. As a leader in branded communications, he’s driven multi-channel content for clients that spreads their messages and generates measurable returns. He holds a B.A. in English and political science from Denison University in Ohio.
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