PISCATAWAY, N.J., July 24, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- GenScript, the world's leading gene synthesis provider, today announced that it will highlight recent innovations using designed mutant libraries to advance neurodegenerative disease treatment at the Protein Engineering Congress USA 2020. During a headline keynote by Dr. Meredith Jackrel of Washington University and a GenScript-hosted panel, experts will review how a first-in-class semiconductor-based DNA synthesis platform is advancing protein engineering. They will also discuss GenScript's precision DNA mutant libraries for improving protein properties such as functional activities and binding affinities for biosynthetic, therapeutic, and diagnostic applications.
"Our novel semiconductor-based DNA synthesis platform allows mutant library construction with precise control over codon usage, thereby enabling the minimization of codon bias and uneven distribution of amino acids as well as preventing the introduction of unwanted or stop codons," said Maung Nyan Win, PhD, Sr. Field Applications Scientist, GenScript. "This customizable codon usage will inherently improve the library quality significantly, saving researchers valuable time and effort during the screening and characterization process, and thus ultimately reducing costs and time to market."
During the Congress:
On July 28 at 12 p.m. EDT, Meredith Jackrel, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry at Washington University in St. Louis, presents the headline keynote on behalf of GenScript titled, "Engineering protein disaggregases to counter the protein misfolding that underpins neurodegeneration." Dr. Jackrel discusses utilizing protein disaggregases to counter the misfolding that underpins neurodegeneration in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and Parkinson's disease. By screening large libraries of Hsp104 variants generated from GenScript's semiconductor-based DNA synthesis platform that comprehensively cover sequence space, Dr. Jackrel aims to uncover variants with improved properties and learn more about the mechanisms of Hsp104 potentiation. Hsp104 is a protein disaggregase from yeast that Dr. Jackrel and team have engineered to counter the misfolding of proteins that aggregate in ALS and Parkinson's disease.
On July 27 at 2:30 p.m. EDT, GenScript hosts the panel "Tailor-Made Mutant Libraries for Precision Engineering," featuring Maung Nyan Win, PhD, Sr. Field Applications Scientist, GenScript; Nicky Caiazza, Co-founder and CSO of Cellibre; and Iman Farasat, Associate Director, Biologics Discovery, The Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson. The panel will discuss the methods, benefits, and uses of an advanced, arrayed semiconductor-based DNA synthesis platform for construction of high-quality mutant libraries that are devoid of unwanted mutants. The panel will also more broadly discuss the utility of these mutant libraries for biosynthetic and therapeutic applications.
"With the Protein Engineering Congress being the place for showcasing the latest innovations for industrial biocatalysis and synthetic biology-based product development, we are incredibly excited to have market leader GenScript as our headline partner, with Dr. Meredith Jackrel delivering the Day 2 keynote," said Mark Gavhure, Director of Commercial Partnerships for Kisaco Research, sponsor of the event.
The Protein Engineering Congress 2020 gathers scientific and industry leaders to discuss innovations and new techniques in protein and enzyme engineering in industrial applications from pharmaceuticals to specialty chemicals to food and beverages and other consumer goods. Dr. Frances Arnold, recipient of the 2018 Nobel Prize for Chemistry and Linus Pauling Professor, Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering & Biochemistry, will keynote the event.
GenScript is a leading contract research organization providing gene, peptide, protein, CRISPR, and antibody reagents to scientists in over 100 countries worldwide. Since its foundation in 2002, GenScript has grown exponentially through partnerships with scientists conducting fundamental life science and translational biomedical research, as well as early stage pharmaceutical development. With a mission to improve the health of mankind and nature through biotechnology, the company has developed the best-in-class capacity and capability for producing biological reagents in order to Make Research Easy for all scientists. For more information, visit www.genscript.com.
Contact:CorporateEric Wang, vice president of marketingGenScript(732) 885-9188 ext. email@example.comMediaSusan ThomasPrincipal, Endpoint Communications(619) firstname.lastname@example.org
View original content to download multimedia:https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/genscript-highlights-tailor-made-mutant-libraries-for-therapeutic-applications-at-protein-engineering-congress-301099634.html
SOURCE Genscript Biotech Corporation
CHENGDU, China, Nov. 26, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Chengdu, capital city of Southwest China'sSichuan province, is working to develop a national pilot zone for advancing next-generation artificial intelligence.
The Chengdu municipal government revealed an action plan promoting the development of an AI-centered pilot zone in November.
According to the plan, Chengdu will invest more than 100 billion yuan ($15.2 billion) in over 170 major projects over two years to support the regional AI industry. It will focus on developing a core area, an innovation hub and several industrial parks.
The core zone is the Chengdu Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone, a national-level innovation center in the city. It is projected to have more than 10 billion yuan in AI-related industrial output value by 2022.
The Tianfu New Area, home to the Chengdu Science City, will be a hub of AI innovation. It is estimated that the scale of its AI industry will surpass 5 billion yuan in 2022.
AI technologies will also be applied in 10 industrial parks including Tianfu Smart Production Industrial Park and Qingbaijiang European Industrial Park to support regional industrial upgrades.
In September, Chinese communication technology giant Huawei agreed to build an AI-based big data center in the Chengdu Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone. The project will result in an integrated big data processing center to serve economic development of Chengdu and its neighboring Chongqing city. There will also be three platforms to support Chengdu's urban management, AI innovation and digital economy. Huawei's total investment will be around 10.9 billion yuan.
According to local officials, the urban management platform will support smart development in fields such as traffic, security, healthcare, contingency management, education and environmental protection. The innovation-supporting platform will help local research institutes carry out advanced technology development.
Representatives from Huawei said the big data center will help the company build an industrial chain with products and solutions "developed in Chengdu, manufactured in Chengdu, and applied in Chengdu and beyond". The big data center will support Huawei's research and development while meeting computing and data storage demand of key industries across the city.
The center will bring Huawei's advanced technologies in 5G, cloud, AI and computing to serve Chengdu's new infrastructure projects and smart city construction, the telecoms giant said.
In June, Chinese internet search giant Baidu joined hands with the Chengdu Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone to promote its self-driving taxi service, the Apollo Go Robotaxi, in Chengdu. The movement will support the autonomous driving sector's development in the city.
Chengdu Supercomputing Center, the first of its kind in Southwest China, started trial operations in September. Government officials said the supercomputing center will strongly support AI industry growth in the region.
A representative from the center said designers had considered using the center to support local AI development even before its construction started. The center can meet various AI computing demands and will help to lower developers' investment and operational costs.
In the future, the center will attract more computing professionals while establishing partnerships with leading universities and institutes.
To build a national pilot zone for next-generation AI, Chengdu will promote cooperation among universities, research institutions and enterprises for industrialization of research results. The zone is expected to become an important technological engine to drive local growth, making Chengdu and the broader region that encompasses Chengdu and Chongqing an influential innovation hub in China.
The move is expected to create a better development environment for businesses, allowing them to enjoy better infrastructure, data and talent resources, according to local officials.
View original content to download multimedia:https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/chengdu-making-strong-push-to-foster-next-gen-ai-technology-301181080.html
SOURCE Chengdu Municipal Government
Marc Benioff, Salesforce CEO & cofounder
SalesforceSalesforce has held talks to buy the workplace messaging app Slack, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday morning. If it goes through, the deal would be Salesforce's largest ever, capping off a years-long acquisition spree that's included companies like MuleSoft and Tableau.
Salesforce is in advanced talks with Slack, and that a deal could be announced within days, potentially by the time Salesforce reports its quarterly earnings on Tuesday, according to the report. However, there's no guarantee it will lead to an acquisition.
However, if a deal is reached, the report indicates that Salesforce would likely pay more than the some $17 billion at which Slack was valued at market close on Tuesday — surpassing its acquisition of Tableau for over $15 billion in 2019. Shares in Slack are up over 30% on the news at the time of publication, while Salesforce stock is off some 5%.
A deal between Salesforce and Slack would make sense for both companies and put increased competitive pressure on Microsoft, several analysts said. That's important, as both Salesforce and the smaller Slack are significant Microsoft rivals in their own right.
Analysts recently told Business Insider that the growth of Microsoft Dynamics 365 threatens the "iron grip" that Salesforce holds on the customer relationship management (CRM) space, while Slack has shown signs that the rise of Microsoft Teams has put a strain on its growth prospects.
By teaming up, analysts now say, Salesforce would be better-positioned to compete directly with Microsoft Teams and the larger Office 365 suite of which it's a part, while Slack gets the resources it needs to build momentum in the marketplace.
"This deal would be a major shot across the bow at Microsoft with the company's Teams offering a direct messaging competitor against Slack that has been a clear hurdle to growth and now would be a two horse race between Microsoft and Salesforce," Wedbush analyst Dan Ives wrote in a note to clients.
Acquiring Slack would help Salesforce improve its collaboration capabilities
As Microsoft becomes a stronger competitor to Salesforce, one of its strengths is that its various tools —like its sales and service software Dynamics 365, its simple app development suite Power Platform, and productivity applications like Word and Excel — are all integrated. Microsoft is increasingly positioning Teams as the "hub for work" where those apps connect.
Teams is included for free with business versions of the Microsoft Office 365 productivity suite. Its usage has grown tremendously this year, hitting 115 million daily active users in October, up from the 75 million it announced in late April and 44 million in mid-March.
Salesforce, for its part, has made some moves to take on the collaboration and productivity space over the years, including the business social network Chatter and the acquisition of web-based word processor Quip. Ultimately, though, Microsoft (and to a lesser extent Google) still dominate the market: It's "a huge business opportunity that Salesforce has sort of failed to really unlock," said Futurum Research analyst Dan Newman.
Adding Slack to the portfolio would allow Salesforce to combine its own productivity products in much the same way that Microsoft has with Teams, analysts said. The moment could be right to strike, too, with demand for these kinds of tools spiking in the pandemic-driven remote work boom.
With remote work "real-time messaging just becomes more important as part of that broader platform," D.A. Davidson analyst Rishi Jaluria told Business Insider.
"Slack would give Salesforce a big step toward being on every desktop," said Valoir analyst Rebecca Wettemann. "Although it gained collaboration capabilities with Quip, given the growth and adoption of Slack it would further its collaboration strategy as well as its ambition to penetrate the enterprise beyond traditional CRM users."
Additionally, it's in line with Salesforce's strategy of relying on acquisitions and inorganic growth to drive its overall growth. Salesforce "lacking infrastructure, has to find new ways to grow, and this is a potential new way to grow," Newman said.
An acquisition would be good for Slack's future growth prospects
For Slack's part, many analysts see an acquisition as a positive sign for its future growth and prospects. As other collaboration tools like Zoom and DocuSign have seen skyrocketing demand during the pandemic, Slack's growth rate has been on par with pre-pandemic levels. That's put pressure on Slack's stock, and left analysts skeptical about the company's future growth.
"Microsoft Teams has been capitalizing on this opportunity better," Jaluria said. He attributes the disparity both to how Microsoft bundles Teams in with the Office 365 suite, but also because of Slack's lack of focus on videoconferencing and file-sharing beyond its core chat capabilities.
The momentum around Teams has helped it overcome what analysts say are Slack's key advantages: Better integration with third-party tools, and relatedly more love from developers who build extensions and add-ons for the platform. With the growth of Teams has come a vibrant developer ecosystem around the app, Jaluria said in a note to clients, which "chips away at one advantage we thought Slack had: developer adoption."
Slack has escalated the rivalry, going so far as to file an antitrust complaint with the European Commission, alleging that Microsoft's practice of bundling Teams with Office 365 is anticompetitive. Microsoft responded by saying Slack suffered from its absence of video conferencing during the pandemic.
By joining Salesforce, however, analysts expect that it would take a lot of pressure off of Slack. The smaller company would get access to Salesforce's massive customer pool, including its roster of big-ticket enterprise customers, driving the kind of growth that it needs to build its business further.
"Slack would instantly be propelled into C-level executive discussions across industries," RBC analyst Alex Zukin wrote in a note to clients.
Got a tip? Contact this reporter via email at email@example.com or Signal at 925-364-4258. (PR pitches by email only, please.) You can also contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop.