UK-based innovation and knowledge centre (IKC) SynbiCITE, for synthetic biology, has opened a commercial synthetic biology foundry at Imperial College London.

Claimed to be the first of its kind in the UK, SynbiCITE’s Foundry provides automated end-to-end design, construction and validation of synthetic biologic components combined with an open-access and sharing software that helps researchers accelerate innovation by sharing their biodesign protocols with various labs located worldwide.

The newly opened foundry will help automated manufacturing processes that meet industry requirements for using applications of synthetic biology in life sciences and several other industries such as fine and special chemicals, energy, agriculture and waste remediation.

"The Foundry has been created and built to operate as a ‘Cloud lab’ to support synthetic biologists across the UK."

It also expects to take biodesign towards growing the global bioeconomy.

SynbiCITE CEO Stephen Chambers said: "To accelerate the translation of synthetic biology R&D into the marketplace.

"The Foundry has been created and built to operate as a ‘Cloud lab’ to support synthetic biologists across the UK and is for everyone in the business of synthetic biology and who can use synthetic biology, the engineering of biology, in their business. These remote users send their biodesigns to the Foundry, which executes the work and delivers the data or prototype to the biodesigner once the work is complete.

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"The Foundry provides a ‘maker space’ for entrepreneurial scientists looking to commercialise their research, ready access to state-of-the-art automation for SMEs, and is a facility for large and small companies to explore the enormous potential of synthetic biology."

Last April, the company in partnership with Imperial College London, ran Lean LaunchPad for Synthetic Biology, a twelve weeks course that aims to equip inventors in the field with the skills, knowledge and understanding to commercialise their idea.

Image: The newly opened foundry will help automated manufacturing processes. Photo: courtesy of Imperial College.