Twist Bioscience Corporation (Nasdaq: TWST) and Beyond Earth, an artist collective, today announced a project to store high-resolution artworks in DNA to be launched to low Earth orbit and the Moon. Beyond Earth artists that will contribute work to the project include: Elena Soterakis, New York, NY; Richelle Gribble, Los Angeles, CA; and Yoko Shimizu, Linz, Austria and Tokyo, Japan.
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To Space, From Earth is a Space Art DNA Capsule utilizing emergent technology and artistic expression to carry a visual message to space. Beyond Earth, an artist collective exploring the frontiers of art and space, partners with Twist Bioscience, a synthetic biology and genomics company, to encode artwork into silicon-based synthetic DNA to be launched on a spaceflight by 2022. Credit: Beyond Earth, Artworks by Elena Soterakis, Yoko Shimizu, Richelle Gribble Space Image: NASA Astronaut Photograph ISS60-E-071360, processed by Robert Simmon
In the ‘To Space, From Earth’ Capsule, select artworks made by members of Beyond Earth reference life on Earth and the current challenges we face referencing human population growth, consumption and degradation, and preservation of Earth’s biodiversity. Artworks reflect on the current geological age of the Anthropocene, where human activity has a dominant effect on climate and the environment. The artists chose to store this message of human impact in synthetic DNA, which is present in nearly all living organisms, to symbolize life on Earth. These artworks serve as a visual record of this current time; they reflect challenges of today to inspire new approaches for a better future. Beyond Earth chose Twist Bioscience to encode the artwork in DNA, as the company is leading the field of DNA data storage.
To store the artworks in DNA, they are digitized and converted from binary data to the DNA bases represented by the letters A, T, G and C. The encoded DNA sequences are synthesized with Twist Bioscience’s silicon-based platform and preserved in a specialized capsule. DNA is nature’s oldest and most resilient data storage method; no energy or maintenance is required to preserve it; it is ultra-dense and hence compact; and lasts hundreds of thousands of years making it the ultimate time capsule for any digitized artwork. For these reasons, To Space, From Earth will endure the test of time and serve as an important record of human history and the biosphere.
Beyond Earth will co-create with space, revealing how spaceflight transforms and evolves artworks, and how space preserves or alters their message over time. Beyond Earth is not only exploring the unique storage capabilities of DNA, but also testing data retrieval when DNA is exposed to the harsh conditions of space.
About Beyond Earth:
Beyond Earth is an all-female international transdisciplinary artist collective. Our mission is to explore the frontiers of art, space, and biology through space-bound artworks. Such projects co-create with space, explore planetary themes and expand possibilities of artistic expression beyond Earth. We utilize scientific and artistic research to create and deploy artworks in space. We aim to uncover the vastness of creativity to represent a plurality of perspectives in space and envision the future of Earth. As artists, we believe that the sky is not the limit and creativity is boundless, accelerating culture and vision that transcends us.
We believe that the future of humanity expands the boundaries of Earth and beyond. Our global initiatives allow individuals, companies, and organizations to connect and explore together — advancing our notion of space and our home planet.
About Twist Bioscience:
At Twist Bioscience, we work in service of customers who are changing the world for the better. In fields such as medicine, agriculture, industrial chemicals and data storage, by using our synthetic DNA tools, our customers are developing ways to better lives and improve the sustainability of the planet. We have developed a disruptive DNA synthesis platform to industrialize the engineering of biology. The core of the platform is a proprietary technology that pioneers a new method of manufacturing synthetic DNA by “writing” DNA on silicon chips.
Legal Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical facts contained herein, including but not limited to the ability of Twist and Beyond Earth to successfully launch the artwork encoded in synthetic DNA on a spaceflight by 2022, are forward-looking statements reflecting the current beliefs and expectations of management made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other important factors that may cause Twist Bioscience’s actual results, performance, or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, the risks and uncertainties of the ability to attract new customers and retain and grow sales from existing customers; risks and uncertainties of rapidly changing technologies and extensive competition in synthetic biology could make the products Twist Bioscience is developing obsolete or non-competitive; uncertainties of the retention of a significant customer; risks of third party claims alleging infringement of patents and proprietary rights or seeking to invalidate Twist Bioscience’s patents or proprietary rights; and the risk that Twist Bioscience’s proprietary rights may be insufficient to protect its technologies. For a further description of the risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, as well as risks relating to Twist Bioscience’s business in general, see Twist Bioscience’s risk factors set forth in Twist Bioscience’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q dated August 12, 2020. Any forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date hereof, and Twist Bioscience specifically disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.