BGI has been developing/co-developing a number of technologies to compete head-to-head with Illumina. One of those is the bioinformatics company L3 Bioinformatics started by Ruibang Luo and Professor Tak-wah Lam of Hong Kong university. They made their public announcement about BGI cloud in April 2015.
On the sequencing side, BGI’s Complete Genomics unit just announced an ‘industrial scale’ sequencer, or what the Omics! Omics! blog describes as ‘nation-scale’ sequencer.
In recent years, DNA sequencing and computational technologies have advanced rapidly, throughput has skyrocketed, and the cost of genome sequencing has plummeted. Complete Genomics has been at the forefront of these advances, sequencing more than 20,000 whole human genomes and driving the adoption of next-generation sequencing (NGS) in clinical research. Now Complete Genomics has incorporated its NGS technology and operational knowledge into the Revolocity system the first truly integrated high-capacity sequencing system for laboratories that demand a cutting-edge genomic facility.
The Revolocity sequencing system is designed to deliver 10,000 whole genome sequences (WGS) a year, and expand to 30,000 WGS per yearsurpassing the scalability of any other sequencing solution available today. The Revolocity system also supports whole exome sequencing (WES). It automates DNA purification from a variety of starting materials, including whole human blood and saliva, and then processes samples seamlessly through the library preparation, sequencing, and data analysis phases. The Revolocity system provides high-confidence data on small variants, including SNPs, insertions, deletions, block substitutions as well as CNVs and structural variants.
Omics!Omics! blog writes -
Which vision of population-scale genomics will dominate the next few years? An integrated factory of uber-short read sequencers? A factory of somewhat longer (but still short) read sequencers with user-defined sample and library prep? Or long, noisy reads run on something that will fit in an overhead bin – but not available (if at all) for many months? In the span of two decades we’ve come a long way from dreaming of a 1Mb/day factory – but do we still need a factory?
We have no idea, but it clearly looks like the society is reaching ‘peak sequencing’ and should invest in other components of medical science.