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Evonetix, Durham University Partner on £1.3M Project to Develop DNA Synthesis Method

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – British synthetic biology firm Evonetix said today that it has launched a £1.3 million ($1.7 million) project in partnership with Durham University to develop a proprietary method for DNA synthesis.

Evonetix's core technology uses an addressable silicon array to direct the synthesis of DNA at many sites in parallel, followed by an error-detection process to allow the assembly of high-fidelity DNA at scale. Through the project — which is being partly funded by Innovate UK — the company plans to develop a new enzymatic approach for gene synthesis, and to integrate it into its arrays. The project will be led by Evonetix researchers, who will work with collaborators at Durham University developing modified nucleotides for the enzymatic synthesis process.

"We believe the use of enzymatic oligonucleotide synthesis, which operates under milder aqueous conditions compared to phosphoramidite chemistry, will provide a significant commercial advantage and offer a highly valuable tool for de novo gene synthesis with our platform," Raquel Sanches-Kuiper, director of biology at Evonetix, said in a statement.

Earlier this year, Evonetix raised $12.3 million in a round of private financing.