Illumina – The Google of DNA
Gareth Andrews / 2 years ago
We have all used Google and other search engines to find everything from that news article we told our friends about the other day to the cute cat video that we just can’t stop watching. We use search engines because they let us find and pick up things more easily, so why not use something similar for our genetic sequences?
San Diego-based biotech company Illumina Machines uses the Illumina for just that. The Illumina is a DNA sequencing machine that has so far generated as much 90% of all our data regarding the DNA sequence to date. That doesn’t mean they plan to stop though as they are about to move into a new venture with another company that focuses on liquid cancer biopsy’s, Grail. With less than a hundredth of the world’s population having their genetic sequence mapped, the idea is that increasing the mapping and detail that these scans are done we can detect, pick up and analyse illness and irregularities in our very building blocks.
Eric Endicott, the director of global relations at Illumina, stated that “we are at a tipping point genomics, where a broad community of scientists and researchers continue to translate the potential of the genome from science to discoveries and applications”.
Would you want a map of your genome done? From the looks of it, Illumina is keen to go from theory to practice by letting everyone get their genetic sequences mapped, even letting companies use it in the field to help detect illnesses and high-risk patients before they are struck by the symptoms.