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Cauley to Lead Development of Company’s Proprietary DNA Data Storage Technology

San Diego, CA., March 22, 2022 — Iridia™ Inc., a pioneer in DNA-based data storage, today announced the addition of “Trey” Thomas H. Cauley III, Ph.D. to the newly created position of Vice President, Engineering as the company accelerates the integration of its proprietary biochemistry with semiconductor and microfluidic technologies designed to address the rapidly expanding, critical data storage problem. 

Iridia’s unique and patented method of data storage integrates semiconductor and nanofluidic technology with a disruptive enzyme-based chemistry to add DNA-based bits representing “0s” and “1s” in a programmable fashion. This offers the potential to add orders of magnitude more storage capacity compared to current archival technologies such as magnetic tape and hard drives paving the way for commercially viable DNA data storage solutions. In addition, Iridia’s solution is the world’s first affordable, integrated data storage solution that can write, store, and read using the same device for a fraction of the cost of competing technologies.

“I am delighted to welcome Trey to our company. He brings the perfect mix of entrepreneurial mindset together with bio-MEMS and microfluidic engineering expertise to rapidly advance our development efforts,” said Murali K. Prahalad, Ph.D., President and CEO of Iridia. “We look forward to his impactful contributions as we continue to build the company and accelerate development of working prototypes.”  

Trey is an accomplished engineering leader, innovative engineer, and product development lead with over 13 years of industry experience in integrated systems, including two years of entrepreneurial experience in starting and operating start-up biomedical device businesses. His experience ranges from systems engineering, plastics development, mechanical engineering, and micro-fluidic design to business development, intellectual property development, and manufacturing transfer. Prior to joining Iridia, Trey served in roles of increasing responsibility with Talis Biomedical Corporation with the most recent positions of VP of Engineering and VP of Research. Previously Trey served as Senior Systems Engineer at Bio-Rad Laboratories where he led the development of the Automated Droplet Generator under ISO13485 design. Prior to Bio-Rad, Trey served in entrepreneurial / engineering roles with Triaxis Medical Devices and AgLinx. Early in his career, Trey held research positions with Sandia National Laboratories, Center for Sustainable Environmental Technologies (CSET) and NASA Reduced Gravity Student Flight Opportunities Program.

Trey is the inventor on over 15 patents (provisional and non-provisional included). He received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Iowa State University as well as, a Masters in Mechanical Engineering and a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering both from the University of California Berkeley. 

About Iridia, Inc.

Headquartered in Carlsbad, CA, Iridia™ Inc. strategically combines proprietary enzymology and semiconductor technology to revolutionize long-term data storage. By leveraging DNA, nature’s perfected data storage system, the company is developing a durable, decodable, and ultra-high-density mode of data storage, that significantly reduces the infrastructure requirements and environmental impact compared to current approaches. Iridia’s solution is the world’s first affordable, integrated data storage solution that can write, store, and read data in the form of DNA. Using proprietary semiconductor technologies and biochemistries, the company can manipulate single molecules of DNA to write information and read it back using the same device for a fraction of the cost of competing technologies. For more information, please visit www.iridia.com

Media Contact

Joleen Schultz
760-271-8150
joleen@joleenschultzassociates.com

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Iridia to Double Headcount and Footprint to Accelerate Growth

Amy Kruse of Prime Movers Lab to Join Board of Directors

San Diego, CA., December 14, 2021 — Iridia™, Inc., a pioneer in DNA-based data storage, today announced that it has closed a follow-on round of $6 million with Prime Movers Lab.  Amy Kruse, General Partner of Prime Movers Lab, will be joining Iridia’s Board of Directors effective immediately. This round is preceded by an oversubscribed $24 million financing, which will facilitate the company’s ability to double its headcount and physical footprint. Proceeds from this follow-on round will fund further validation of the company’s technology and the development of working prototypes.

Iridia’s disruptive technology is designed to integrate the writing, storage, and read back of massive amounts of data using synthetic DNA as the storage media. This combination of functionality will significantly increase data density and durability compared to conventional approaches, while dramatically reducing the physical and carbon footprints of commercial data centers around the world.

“We are extremely excited to have Prime Movers Lab on board as an equity partner, as well as the addition of Amy to our board,” said Murali K. Prahalad, Ph.D., President and CEO of Iridia. “They bring a tremendous amount of strategic expertise in deploying complex technologies into real-world environments, as well as the potential for participating in additional financing rounds.”

Amy Kruse brings over 15 years of experience working with emerging companies. She is currently a General Partner at Prime Movers Lab where she leads their life sciences investments. Previously, Amy served as the Chief Scientific Officer at Optios, as well as VP and Chief Technology Officer at Cubic Global Defense overseeing innovation and the R&D portfolio across the entire defense enterprise. Early in her career, she served as a government civilian program manager at DARPA. Amy is a Founding Member of the Loomis Innovation Council and a Guest Lecturer for Singularity University. She earned a BS in Cell and Structural Biology and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana, where she was awarded an NSF Graduate Fellowship.

“As the volume of data being generated every day increases at exponential rates, the demand for storing that data is also skyrocketing. We think DNA provides the most exciting opportunity for solving the data storage problem, and Iridia has the right team and approach for the vast and underserved data storage space,” said Kruse. “Iridia’s proprietary biochemistry and system architecture will be more energy-efficient, cost-competitive, and secure than competing data storage solutions.”

Data generation is expanding exponentially. The Economist predicts there will be up to 1 trillion computerized, networked devices by 2035. The world’s ability to generate digital data is far exceeding our ability to store it, thus significantly constraining the power of big data analytics. Currently, over 20 zettabytes of digital data are lost each year due to storage capacity limitations. To put this in context, to store one zettabyte of data would require more than one billion, one terabyte hard drives. And if technologies such as flash memory were used to meet this growing need, the resultant archive would need up to 100 times the world’s available supply of microchip-grade silicon by 20401.  

Iridia’s unique and patented method of data storage integrates semiconductor technology with a disruptive enzyme-based chemistry to add DNA-based bits representing “0s” and “1s” in a programmable fashion. This offers the potential to add orders of magnitude more storage capacity compared to current archival technologies such as magnetic tape and hard-drives paving the way for commercially viable DNA data storage solutions.

“As the industry focus on DNA data storage expands, Iridia will be well positioned with a solution designed specifically for the modern data center,” said Jay T. Flatley, Chairman of the Board of Iridia and Chairman and former CEO of Illumina (Nasdaq: ILMN). “This additional funding will enable the company to accelerate development of working prototypes, an important milestone on the path to commercialization and adoption.”

About Iridia, Inc.

Headquartered in Carlsbad, CA, Iridia™ Inc. strategically combines proprietary enzymology and semiconductor technology to revolutionize long-term data storage. By leveraging DNA, nature’s perfected data storage system, the company is developing a durable, decodable, and ultra-high-density mode of data storage, that significantly reduces the infrastructure requirements and environmental impact compared to current approaches. Iridia’s solution is the world’s first affordable, integrated data storage solution that can write, store, and read data in the form of DNA. Using proprietary semiconductor technologies and biochemistries, the company can manipulate single molecules of DNA to write information and read it back using the same device for a fraction of the cost of competing technologies. For more information, please visit www.iridia.com.

About Prime Movers Lab

Prime Movers Lab invests in breakthrough scientific startups founded by Prime Movers, the inventors who transform billions of lives. We invest in early-stage companies reinventing human augmentation, energy, transportation, infrastructure, manufacturing, and agriculture. Our team is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs in their mission to commercialize breakthrough science and serve humanity. For more information, visit: www.primemoverslab.com.

Media Contact

Joleen Schultz
760-271-8150
joleen@joleenschultzassociates.com

  1. Zhirnov, V., et al., ”Nucleic acid memory,” Nature Materials., vol. 15, no.4,pp 366-370, 2016.

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Iridia Raises $24 Million in Series B Funding

Oversubscribed Financing to Build World’s First High-Density DNA-Based Memory Chip

San Diego, CA., March 16, 2021 — Iridia™, Inc., a pioneer in fully integrated DNA-based memory chips, today announced that it has closed its Series B financing at a total of $24 million. The round, led by LifeSci Venture Partners of New York, was substantially oversubscribed, with other prominent participants including Western Digital Capital, JSR Corporation, North Sound Ventures, the Pritzker Vlock Family Office (PVFO), Longley Capital, Validus Growth Investors, ATEM Capital, Tech Coast Angels, and numerous industry-leading high net-worth individuals. Iridia’s disruptive technology is designed to integrate the writing, storage, and read back of massive amounts of data in a microchip format using synthetic DNA as the storage media. This combination of functionality will significantly increase data density and durability compared to conventional approaches, while dramatically reducing the physical and carbon footprints of commercial data centers around the world.

“The enthusiasm for this investment reflects the coming of age of DNA-based data storage and underscores the growing need for a robust, cost-effective and sustainable solution,” said Paul Yook, Partner and CIO of LifeSci Venture Partners. “Iridia’s technology represents a powerful intersection of technology and life sciences to create a novel solution for a massive global market.”

“We are incredibly excited to be joined by a group of high-quality investors spanning premier institutional VCs from life sciences, global leaders in data storage and semiconductors and recognized individual investors who have built transformational companies,” said Murali K. Prahalad, Ph.D., President and CEO of Iridia. “This round will empower Iridia to accelerate the development of the world’s first DNA-based memory chips and pave the way for DNA data storage to enter the mainstream.”

Data generation is expanding exponentially. The Economist predicts there will be up to 1 trillion computerized, networked devices by 2035. The world’s ability to generate digital data is far exceeding our ability to store it, thus significantly constraining the power of big data analytics. Currently, over 20 zettabytes of digital data are lost each year due to storage capacity limitations. To put this in context, to store one zettabyte of data would require more than one billion, one terabyte hard drives. And if technologies such as flash memory were used to meet this growing need, the resultant archive would need up to 100 times the world’s available supply of microchip-grade silicon by 20401.   

“Western Digital is delighted to participate in Iridia’s financing as the company advances its transformational memory chip concept, providing a fully, self-contained DNA Data Storage solution,” said Steffen Hellmold, Vice President, Corporate Strategic Initiatives. “The technology holds promise to disrupt archival storage, given its ultra-high density and low total cost of ownership, and we anticipate seeing innovation at an order of magnitude every year in this field. Western Digital is committed to working with Iridia to uncover new potential opportunities and helping them better understand on-going storage trends to support their continued success.”

Iridia’s method of data storage integrates semiconductor chip technology with a disruptive enzyme-based chemistry to add DNA-based bits representing “0s” and “1s” in a programmable fashion, adding orders of magnitude more storage capacity compared to current archival technologies such as magnetic tapes and hard-drives. Once written, data encoded in DNA by Iridia’s chip can be stored and read within the chip itself eliminating the need for complex storage infrastructures and laboratory-based sequencing. The company’s technology has the potential to reduce the cost of encoding & retrieving 1 TB of data stored in DNA from a current cost of more than $1 million to less than $1, paving the way for the first commercially viable DNA data storage solution.

“The potential of DNA as a viable data storage medium is rapidly gaining acceptance. Prior to Iridia, there was no realistic way to harness that potential in commercially competitive products,” said Jay T. Flatley, Chairman of the Board of Iridia and Chairman and former CEO of Illumina (Nasdaq: ILMN). “This round of financing will build upon Iridia’s robust proof of concept and demonstrate fundamental scalability, ultimately enabling wide adoption of DNA-based data storage solutions.”

About Iridia, Inc.

Headquartered in Carlsbad, CA, Iridia™ Inc. strategically combines proprietary enzymology and semiconductor technology to revolutionize long-term data storage. By leveraging DNA, nature’s perfected data storage system, the company has developed a durable, decodable, and ultra-high-density semiconductor chip solution for data storage, that significantly reduces the infrastructure requirements and environmental impact compared to current approaches. Iridia’s solution is the world’s first affordable, integrated data storage solution that can write, store, and read data on a single chip. Using proprietary nano memory cell technology and biochemistries, the company can manipulate single molecules of DNA to write information and read it back using the same device for a fraction of the cost of competing technologies. For more information, please visit www.iridia.com.

Media Contact

Joleen Schultz
760-271-8150
joleen@joleenschultzassociates.com

  1. Zhirnov, V., et al., ”Nucleic acid memory,” Nature Materials., vol. 15, no.4,pp 366-370, 2016.

Download PDF

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