Multi-project agreement involves engineering of anaerobic species, a critical component for microbiome medicines
SAN DIEGO and BOSTON, April 12, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Persephone Biosciences Inc., a synthetic biology company reimagining patient and infant health, and Ginkgo Bioworks (NYSE: DNA), the leading horizontal platform for cell programming, today announced a collaboration to develop novel therapeutics based on the bacterial genus Bacteroides.
Bacteroides species are among the most common members of the microbiota of animals, especially in the gastrointestinal tract, and are likely a useful tool for stable and long-term delivery of microbial medicines. Unlike many other gut microbes, Bacteroides have been shown to be a good candidate for genetic engineering. Persephone is pioneering the use of synthetic biology for the development of microbial products that impact patient and infant health, which requires the ability to engineer Bacteroides strains for therapeutic applications. This demands a set of reliable and generalizable genetic tools for rapid Bacteroides engineering to optimize therapeutic properties. Ginkgo and Persephone will collaborate on the design and synthesis of such a toolkit as well as the development of novel microbial therapeutics using such a tool kit.
"We love supporting early-stage biotechs like Persephone to accelerate groundbreaking and meaningful work at its very genesis," said Jason Kelly, co-founder and CEO of Ginkgo Bioworks. "The microbial medicines space is one we are deeply committed to, and we look forward to further developing our anaerobic engineering capability to help foster the next-generation treatments Persephone is developing."
"This collaboration not only provides Persephone with critical engineering capabilities, but also sets the stage for us to further partner with Ginkgo, and access its platform's scale, on additional future projects," said Stephanie Culler, co-founder and CEO of Persephone Biosciences. "We believe Ginkgo's scalability provides us with the opportunity to de-risk and accelerate our programs, which in turn could enable us to improve patient outcomes faster."
About Persephone Biosciences
Persephone is pioneering the use of synthetic biology for the development of microbial products that impact patient and infant health. Persephone is building an end-to-end platform to industrialize the development of engineered cells that restore health to damaged human ecosystems. The company was founded in the summer of 2017 by synthetic and metabolic engineering pioneers, Stephanie Culler PhD, and Steve Van Dien PhD. For more information, visit www.persephonebiosciences.com.
About Ginkgo Bioworks
Ginkgo is building a platform to enable customers to program cells as easily as we can program computers. The company's platform is enabling biotechnology applications across diverse markets, from food and agriculture to industrial chemicals to pharmaceuticals. Ginkgo has also actively supported a number of COVID-19 response efforts, including K-12 pooled testing, vaccine manufacturing optimization and therapeutics discovery. For more information, visit www.ginkgobioworks.com.
Forward-Looking Statements of Ginkgo Bioworks
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including statements regarding the potential success of the partnership and Ginkgo's cell programming platform. These forward-looking statements generally are identified by the words "believe," "can," "project," "potential," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "intend," "strategy," "future," "opportunity," "plan," "may," "should," "will," "would," "will be," "will continue," "will likely result," and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Many factors could cause actual future events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this press release, including but not limited to: (i) the effect of Ginkgo's business combination with Soaring Eagle Acquisition Corp. ("Soaring Eagle") on Ginkgo's business relationships, performance, and business generally, (ii) risks that the business combination disrupts current plans of Ginkgo and potential difficulties in Ginkgo's employee retention, (iii) the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted against Ginkgo related to its business combination with Soaring Eagle, (iv) volatility in the price of Ginkgo's securities now that it is a public company due to a variety of factors, including changes in the competitive and highly regulated industries in which Ginkgo operates and plans to operate, variations in performance across competitors, changes in laws and regulations affecting Ginkgo's business and changes in the combined capital structure, (v) the ability to implement business plans, forecasts, and other expectations after the completion of the business combination, and identify and realize additional opportunities, (vi) the risk of downturns in demand for products using synthetic biology, (vii) the unpredictability of the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and the demand for COVID-19 testing and the commercial viability of our COVID-19 testing business, and (viii) changes to the biosecurity industry, including due to advancements in technology, emerging competition and evolution in industry demands, standards and regulations. The foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. You should carefully consider the foregoing factors and the other risks and uncertainties described in the "Risk Factors" section of Ginkgo's annual report on Form 10-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") on March 29, 2022 and other documents filed by Ginkgo from time to time with the SEC. These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and Ginkgo assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Ginkgo does not give any assurance that it will achieve its expectations.
GINKGO BIOWORKS INVESTOR CONTACT:
GINKGO BIOWORKS MEDIA CONTACT:
PERSEPHONE BIOSCIENCES CONTACTS:
Dr. Stephanie Culler
CEO and Co-founder
Persephone Biosciences, Inc.
SOURCE Ginkgo Bioworks