Resource: List of Biotechnology Companies to Watch


PDF version: List of Biotechnology Companies to Watch

I created this list to serve as a resource to help people learn about and keep track of key biotechnology companies. Some of these are emerging startups, some are established giants, and some provide useful services. Though this list is far from comprehensive, I have tried to cover as many of the key players as possible. In the next iteration of this list, I would especially like to add more agricultural biotechnology companies. It is also important to realize that this landscape is constantly changing, so some of the information on this list will eventually transition into antiquity (this current version was written over the course of 2021 and early 2022). I think many people will find my compilation both interesting and useful. I hope you enjoy delving into the exciting world of biotechnology!  

AblynxNanobodies as therapeutics and as laboratory reagents.
AgeX TherapeuticsTreating aging using stem cell therapies, induced tissue regeneration, related methods.
AgriseaDeveloping salt-tolerant rice for ocean agriculture.
Early stage as of May 2021.
AllonniaEngineering microorganisms and enzymes to degrade environmental pollutants.
Funded by the Ferment Consortium of Ginkgo Bioworks.
AsimovDeveloping computer aided design tools for synthetic biology, making host cell lines for viral vector and biologics manufacturing, constructing genetic parts database.
One of the co-founders is Christopher Voigt.
James Collins is on the scientific advisory board.
Beam TherapeuticsDeveloping base editor technologies towards therapeutic applications.
David Liu and Feng Zhang are among the co-founders.
BiogenLarge pharmaceutical company focusing on developing treatments for neurological diseases.
Has made moves towards developing gene therapy pipelines for treating neurological diseases, though the company has experienced some setbacks in this space (i.e. failed clinical trials).
BioMarin PharmaceuticalEnzyme replacement therapies for rare diseases.
During April 2021, announced a collaboration with the Allen Institute to develop AAV gene therapies for rare diseases of the brain.
Bionaut LabsMicrorobotics as a new paradigm for drug delivery.
BioVivaDeveloping gene therapies to treat aging, offers tests for determining biological age.
Elizabeth Parrish (the company’s CEO) tested an experimental gene therapy on herself and reports positive results, though some people question whether the therapy actually worked.
George Church and Aubrey de Grey are on the scientific advisory board.
Anders Sandberg is the company’s ethics advisor.
CapsigenEngineering superior AAV gene therapy vectors through a proprietary method called Transcription-Dependent Directed Evolution (TRADETM).
Have developed greatly improved neurotrophic AAVs.
Entered into a partnership with Biogen during May of 2021 to develop AAV gene therapies that treat various brain and neuromuscular disorders.
CATALOGBuilding a DNA-based platform for massive digital data storage and computation.
Cortical LabsDeveloping hybrid bioelectronic devices which incorporate cultured biological neurons to perform computational tasks. These devices are power efficient, scalable, robust to physical damage, and have the potential for fluid adaptation to many different computational problems.
Creative BiolabsCustom services for antibody engineering, membrane protein production and characterization, bioconjugation, gene therapy development, viral vector engineering, cell therapy development, molecular dynamics simulations, drug development consulting, and more.
CultivariumDeveloping molecular techniques, hardware platforms, and software tools to accelerate adoption of non-model microorganisms for biotechnology.
Cultivarium is a focused research organization (FRO), so it possesses a distinct funding approach and different goals compared to traditional startups. For more information, see this open access article describing FROs in Nature.
Dyno TherapeuticsUsing deep learning to improve properties of AAV capsids as a platform technology for gene therapy.
George Church is one of the co-founders.
E11 BioBuilding moonshot technologies involving superior molecular barcoding, spatial -omics, and viral circuit tracing to help neuroscientists map the brain. Has a long-term goal of mapping brains at the one-hundred billion neuron scale.
E11 Bio is a focused research organization (FRO), so it possesses a distinct funding approach and different goals compared to traditional startups. For more information, see this open access article describing FROs in Nature.
Editas MedicineCRISPR-based gene therapy.
George Church, David Liu, Jennifer Doudna, Feng Zhang, and J. Keith Joung are the co-founders.
Eikon TherapeuticsSuperior drug discovery platform which leverages high-throughput automated super-resolution microscopy for tracking single protein movements in living cells.
Eric Betzig is one of the advisors.
GATTAquantDNA origami imaging probes, fluorescence microscopy reagents.
First commercial application of DNA origami.
GenScriptServices in artificial DNA synthesis, synthetic biology, antibodies, cell therapies, enzyme engineering, etc.
Ginkgo BioworksSynthetic biology, biomanufacturing, microorganism design, enzyme engineering, etc.
Acquired Gen9 in 2017.
HelixNanoDeveloping an mRNA-based SARS-CoV-2 vaccine which might protect from all possible variants of the virus.
Pivoted from original plan of developing cancer vaccines using the same technology.
Co-founded by Hannu Rajaniemi, who is also a successful science fiction author.
George Church is an advisor.
ImmunaiCombining multi-omic single cell profiling technologies and machine learning to comprehensively map the immune system and thereby enable greatly improved immunotherapies as well as accelerate clinical trials and avoid costly failures.
Impossible FoodsUses synthetic biology and biochemical engineering to develop plant-based substitutes for meat products.
Their signature product is the Impossible Burger. They also make a product which mimics sausages.
One notable strategy employed by Impossible Foods is production of leghemoglobin in yeast. This compound gives a meaty flavor when added to their food products. They also add other plant-based compounds to mimic the fats found in animal meat.
Intellia TherapeuticsDeveloping therapies which employ CRISPR gene editing technology.
Has conducted some successful clinical trials using CRISPR gene therapy to treat transthyretin amyloidosis (as of February 2022, this is not yet FDA approved though).
Also working on CRISPR therapeutics for engineering T cells towards targeting acute myeloid leukemia.
Partnered with Regeneron, Novartis, and others.
Jennifer Doudna was one of the co-founders.
KernelNeurotechnology, noninvasive brain-computer interfaces, invasive neural prostheses.
Some noninvasive products anticipated to be released during 2021.
Founded by Bryan Johnson who personally invested $54 million.
Raised an additional $53 million from outside investors.
Early goal is to help treat brain disease, has ambitions to enable human enhancement.
LarondeDeveloping therapies which utilize circular RNAs (Laronde calls these “endless RNAs”) as expression vehicles for proteins. Such circular RNAs are much more stable and less immunogenic than linear RNAs. 
LigandalPeptide nanoparticles for targeted CRISPR-Cas gene therapy delivery, immunotherapy, hematological gene therapy, aging treatments.
Founded by Andre Watson.
Mammoth BiosciencesCRISPR-based diagnostics.
Jennifer Doudna is one of the co-founders.
ManifoldBioSystem for barcoding protein therapeutics to enable high-throughput design and testing in complex environments, machine learning to optimize drug design.
George Church is one of the co-founders.
ModernaBiomedical technologies which utilize mRNA inside of lipid nanoparticles; application areas include drug discovery, drug development, and vaccines.
Major player in COVID-19 pandemic since it was one of the first companies which developed and distributed SARS-CoV-2 vaccines to the world.
Nautilus BiotechnologyDeveloping a high-throughput single-molecule proteomics platform which integrates many novel techniques to decipher protein networks and thereby help accelerate basic science, new therapeutics, and new diagnostics.
NeuralinkHigh-bandwidth brain-machine interfaces, surgical robots which implant the interfaces in a manner resembling a sewing machine.
Early goal is to help treat brain disease, has ambitions to enable human enhancement.
Founded by Elon Musk and others, highly publicized by Elon Musk.
Has done testing on rats, pigs, monkeys, and other animals as of April 2021.
OpenwaterPortable medical imaging technologies which employ novel optoelectronics, lasers, and holographic systems.
Wearable imaging technologies which could be 1,000x cheaper than MRI and achieve similar or better results.
Has speculated that their technology might eventually allow telepathic communication.
Organovo3D tissue bioprinting for in vivo clinical applications, in vitro tissue models for disease modeling and toxicology.
Long-term goal is to print entire human organs for transplants.
Oxford Nanopore TechnologiesPortable nanopore sequencing devices, high-throughput desktop nanopore sequencing devices, sample preparation kits.
The company states that they have the first and only nanopore DNA and RNA sequencing platform as of May 2021.
OxitecGenetically modified male insects which curb the reproduction of populations of their species in the wild, acting as a precise and environmentally friendly way of controlling dangerous pests that spread disease or destroy crops.
After years of battles with activists and regulatory bodies, the company will release 750 million genetically modified mosquitos in the Florida Keys (the first time this has been done in the U.S.) with the goal of reducing rates of illnesses such as yellow fever and dengue. 
Panacea LongevityEnhancing longevity and health using a fasting-mimetic metabolite supplementation.
Early stage as of May 2021.
ProteineaMass-produced insect larvae as an affordable way of manufacturing recombinant proteins.
Early stage as of May 2021.
Repair BiotechnologiesDeveloping a cholesterol degrading platform therapy which can reverse atherosclerosis.
The CEO, who is known as Reason, is outspoken about the need to combat aging.
Has preclinical proof-of-concept as of May 2021.
ResilienceNew manufacturing platforms to service partners for development and scaling of gene therapies, cell therapies, vaccines, protein therapies, and more.
Received $800 million in funding during 2020.
Sherlock BiosciencesCRISPR-based diagnostics.
Feng Zhang is one of the co-founders.
SomalogicProteomics platform called SomaScan for protein biomarker discovery which aids researchers in the development of new diagnostics.
SomaScan is an aptamer-based platform which can simultaneously measure 7,000 protein biomarkers.
Founded by Larry Gold, who is the inventor of SELEX.
SynthegoCRISPR genome engineering services, custom cell lines, custom screening libraries, CRISPR reagents and kits, aiding both academic researchers and clinical drug developers.
Syzygy PlasmonicsDeveloping a photocatalytic reactor system which leverages a nanoparticle-based plasmonic photocatalyst. The photocatalyst consists of a larger light-harvesting plasmonic nanoparticle decorated with smaller catalytic nanoparticles. Their first product will be a clean hydrogen fuel production system which does not rely on petroleum.
More of a chemical engineering company than a biotechnology company, but their technology may eventually have applications in biology.
Tilibit NanosystemsService which gives researchers predesigned and custom DNA origami nanostructures, including ones with chemical modifications.
Founded by Hendrik Dietz, who was CEO from 2012-2014. He is now a scientific advisor.
Twist BioscienceArtificial DNA synthesis services. Synthetic biology towards insulin manufacturing in yeast, scalable spider silk manufacturing, combating malaria, and DNA data storage.
Emily Leproust is a co-founder.
Vault PharmaProtein vault nanocompartments as a drug delivery platform to treat cancers and other diseases, protein vaults as a vaccine platform.
Co-founded by Leonard Rome.
VectorBuilderServices in vector cloning, virus packaging, library construction, cell lines, etc.
ZymergenSynthetic biology, metabolic engineering, biomanufacturing of materials and compounds as a substitute for chemical engineering practices.
64x BioHigh-throughput screening and computational design of new mammalian cell lines for manufacturing gene and cell therapies.
George Church and Pamela Silver are among the co-founders.
10x GenomicsSpatial transcriptomics, genomics, proteomics, immune cell profiling, etc.
Acquired ReadCoor and Cartana in 2020.

Cover image is a photograph of a biopharmaceutical manufacturing facility from https://www.techthroughsol.com/.

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