Seattle’s strong ensemble of innovation and entrepreneurship organizations is getting a new addition. Shenzhen’s BGI, one of the world’s leading genomics companies, is opening an innovation center in Seattle that aims to use genomics to develop technologies and collaborative projects in life science, global health, and related fields.
Genomics is a field of science that leverages genetics to find solutions to some of the greatest challenges global society faces. Examples include securing food shortages, preserving biodiversity in the face of climate change, and eradicating diseases that kill millions across the globe. BGI’s pedigree in genomics is unmatched. BGI has generated over 1,000 publications and specializes in innovative, high profile research in fields such as healthcare, agriculture, conservation, and environmental fields. Their goal is to make genomics testing highly accessible to researchers and patients across the globe.
BGI co-founder and genomics pioneer Dr. Jian Wang was in Seattle last week to attend the Microsoft CEO Summit and announce the Innovation Center. Wang has previous ties to Seattle, completing a senior research fellowship at the University of Washington early in his career.
Wang has made it clear that BGI will collaborate with other bio research titans in Seattle. During his stay, he met with University of Washington President Ana Mari Cauce and UW medicine CEO Paul Ramsey, as well as Dr. Linda Buck, Nobel Laureate and researcher at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. BGI has strong partnerships with leading research institutes in the area, including UW Medicine, the Allen Institute for Brain Science, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Seattle’s already thriving life sciences sector partnering with BGI’s innovation center will have innumerable global benefits. “With the partnership between UW Medicine and BGI, more innovations in research, education and healthcare will be developed between Seattle and Shenzhen to benefit the health of people worldwide,” Wang stated.