Numerous innovations have hit life science labs in the past decade, such as new techniques for designing DNA and editing genomes. Yet, researchers still rely on older tools — such as paper notebooks, Excel spreadsheets, and email — to manage data collected from those innovations. This means time is wasted organizing, finding, and duplicating information before even starting new experiments.
“There are other companies and hospitals working on ways to interpret the genome. However, no one that we are aware of is working on better ways to deliver and distribute the content necessary to make these interpretations happen. We’re the only ones focusing on making the jobs of developers easier in this field,” SolveBio’s CEO and co-founder Mark Kaganovich said in an email.
As hospitals and public health organizations switch to using genomic data for testing, searching through genomic data can still take some time. Y Combinator-backed startup, One Codex, wants to help researchers, clinicians and public health officials, who have sequenced more than 100,000 genomes and created petabytes of data, to search this data.
DNA sequencing was still very expensive and rare at the time, but Mangubat and her cofounders at Spiral Genetics anticipated a day when the cost of sequencing a genome would drop enough to allow scientists to sequence hundreds of thousands or millions of human genomes, whole populations, and compare them to learn about disease. To analyze such a volume of data, with the technology of the time, would have been prohibitively difficult and time-consuming, Mangubat predicted. Her company aimed to leverage cloud-based computing to crunch those huge gene sets, taking a fraction of the time.