We are getting closer to the $1,000 genome. Their business though is not to sell the machines, but rather to “wholesale” the process, in other words they will sequence only and offer no interpretations, which would be done by another company they would supply the sequencing information to. Not too long ago I wrote up it was $350,000 to have a total sequence done but that also included the analysis and other support. Pharmaceutical companies or research laboratories are the anticipated market for the company.
This will be moving personalized medicine up on the fast track if all goes according to plan with genomic data centers arising in the future utilizing this type of system and services. BD
The cost of determining a person’s complete genetic blueprint is about to plummet again — to $5,000.
That is the price that a start-up company called Complete Genomics says it will start charging next year for determining the sequence of the genetic code that makes up the DNA in one set of human chromosomes. The company is set to announce its plans on Monday.
“It’s a shockingly low price,” said George M. Church, a professor of genetics at Harvard who is an adviser to Complete Genomics and to several other sequencing companies.
Knome, a company that offers to provide consumers with their DNA sequence, charges $350,000. But that is a retail price that includes not just the sequencing costs but also the analysis of the data and the customer service.
Complete Genomics will not offer a service to consumers. But it will provide sequencing for consumer-oriented companies like Knome. Knome is already exploring farming out its sequencing to Complete Genomics. “We anticipate we’d be able to significantly drop our price,” said Jorge C. Conde, the chief executive of Knome, which is based in Cambridge, Mass.
Complete Genomics’s sequencer does not work that much differently from rival machines. But company executives say that miniaturization allows their sequencer to use only tiny amounts of enzymes and other materials. Outsiders have not yet examined the accuracy of the company’s sequences.