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Twist Bioscience, Watchmaker Genomics Partner on High-Throughput NGS Applications

NEW YORK – Twist Bioscience and enzyme engineering firm Watchmaker Genomics announced Tuesday a partnership on high-throughput applications of next-generation sequencing, including tumor profiling, inherited disease diagnostics, liquid biopsies, and minimal residual disease (MRD) monitoring.

Under the terms of the deal, the partners will create products, the first of which will incorporate Watchmaker's high-fidelity library amplification master mix into Twist's enzymatic library preparation kit.

Other potential application areas include cell-free DNA, circulating tumor DNA, single-cell genomics, low allele somatic variant detection, and tumor mutation burden.

Financial and other details were not disclosed.

"By pairing superior enzymes with best-in-class DNA, we expect to offer differentiated products that simplify and streamline workflows before putting samples on the sequencer," Twist CEO and Cofounder Emily Leproust said in a statement.

Boulder, Colorado-based Watchmaker offers a portfolio of enzymes and kits for NGS library preparation, synthetic biology, and molecular diagnostics.

South San Francisco-based Twist recently launched a NGS Methylation Detection System featuring a new enzymatic alternative to bisulfite conversion from New England Biolabs. Last month, Leproust revealed that Twist has been working on MRD testing and that in Q4 2020 NGS revenues outpaced synthetic biology revenues for the first time in the company's history.