NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) - ZS Genetics said today that it has joined the Archon X Prize for Genomics competition, a contest sponsored by the X Prize Foundation that will award $10 million to the first research team that can sequence 100 human genomes within ten days for less than $10,000.
ZS Genetics, which is developing a sequencing method based on modified transmission electron microscopy and atomic labeling, is the seventh group to join the Archon X Prize competition. Other teams include Visigen Biotechnologies, Roche’s 454 Life Sciences subsidiary, the Foundation for Applied Molecular Evolution, Reveo, base4 innovation, and George Church’s Personal Genome X-team.
ZS Genetics, based in North Reading, Mass., was founded in 2003. The company said in a statement that it is currently “finalizing development” of its microscopy-based technology platform, which directly creates detailed images of individual DNA or RNA molecules.
The company has an ongoing collaboration with the University of New Hampshire to develop the technology.
ZS Genetics said that its approach promises to enable whole-genome sequencing in “days instead of months, for thousands of dollars instead of millions; and with long base pair read-lengths, which allow the detection of long repeating patterns in a genetic code.”