Whole Genome Sequencing Becomes Less Expensive

BGI Genomics (BGI) recently announced that it has broken the $100 barrier for the first time, offering a DNA sequencing system that is capable of decoding the genomes of 100,000 people a year. 

BGI is the world’s leading provider of genomic sequencing services and proteomic services, now serving customers in more than 66 countries. BGI provides academic institutions, pharmaceutical companies, health care providers and other organizations with integrated genomic sequencing and proteomic services and solutions across a broad range of applications spanning:

  • Basic research covering human, plant, animal and microbial species
  • Clinical research in human health
  • Drug discovery and development
  • Agriculture and Biodiversity preservation and sustainability

BGI works with the expectation that genomics will become the core of modern medicine as sequencing becomes less expensive and more reliable. The Direct-to-consumer genetic testing opportunity will continue to grow as the cost for genome sequencing decreases.

Sequencing our entire genome offers a more detailed test than the commercial tests currently available by companies such 23andMe and Ancestry. BGI’s ultimate goal has been to sequence whole genomes for $100 or less.

BGI’s new system, known as DNBSEQ-TX, has been made possible with the company’s 2012 acquisition of Complete Genomics, initiating objections from industry leader Illumina.

BGI also recently formed a strategic partnership with SpaceTime Ventures of Brazil in the area of tropical genomics, and signed a memorandum with Belgian company VIB to establish joint research programs and conduct co-developments on innovative applications of single cell sequencing, health monitoring omics and more.


Takeaway: Demand for the BGI’s new system and its ability to sequence 100,000 genomes per year still needs to be determined.