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IndyGeneUS, Global Health Innovations, Aurum Institute Partner for Large-Scale Sequencing

NEW YORK – IndyGeneUS, Global Health Innovations, and South Africa's Aurum Institute said on Monday that they have partnered on whole-genome sequencing to study infectious and noncommunicable diseases.

Under the terms of the deal, IndyGeneUS — pronounced "indigenous" — will sequence 2 million samples for the Aurum Institute's biorepository, applying multiple next-generation DNA sequencing methods including sequencing-by-synthesis and long reads — such as nanopore-based platforms — to aid in regional, continental, and global pathogen research of SARS-CoV-2, HIV, tuberculosis, and other infectious diseases.

Financial and other details of the deal were not disclosed.

"The IndyGeneUS AI team is committed to harnessing genetic diversity throughout Africa," IndyGeneUS founder Yusuf Henriques said in a statement. "This collaboration is a testament to our collective goal of closing the drug and treatment gap on the continent, particularly in the areas of malaria, TB, and HIV-related cancers."

Over the last several years, the Aurum Institute was awarded approximately $1.8 million by the US National Institutes of Health to conduct clinical trials in HIV and TB treatment and prevention.

IndyGeneUS AI is building what it says is the world's largest blockchain-encrypted repository of clinical and genomic data from indigenous and diasporic Africans. Last year, the company received $1.5 million in seed funding from South African VC firm IsimoVest Venture Capital Partners and others.