IonTorrent ion-sequencing machine announced publically



Ion Torrent Systems, Inc. 
Ion Personal Genome MachineTM Sequencer Grant

Semiconductor Sequencing for LifeTM



Ion TorrentTM will award two Ion Personal Genome Machine (PGMTM) sequencers in April 2010 through a grant program designed to help make DNA sequencing accessible to all scientists.

The Ion PGM Sequencer Grant Program is designed to foster the development of new applications for DNA sequencing that leverage the instrument's unprecedented speed, scalability and low cost. The Ion PGM sequencer can do a run in about an hour, offers semiconductor scalability and is one tenth the price of other sequencers to buy and to run.

"Ion Torrent technology enables scientists to do experiments they never thought were possible, and that freedom will foster innovation and drive breakthroughs in research," said Dr. Jonathan Rothberg, founder and CEO of Ion Torrent. "We look forward to working with scientists around the world to create applications that will transform healthcare."

The grant submissions will be judged on the merit of the ideas, as well as the resources and expertise the applicants can bring to the project. Dr. Rothberg and members of the Ion Torrent Scientific Advisory Board, including Dr. Ron Davis and Dr. George Church, will judge the submissions. Applications will be accepted from Feb 27th to April 4th. To apply, go to the grant application.

True semiconductor sequencing

The Ion PGM sequencer, which will be launched in 2010, uses a new sequencing technology that brings the transformative power of the semiconductor to the life sciences.  Ion Torrent technology directly translates chemically encoded information (A, C, G, T) into digital information (0, 1) on a semiconductor chip.


This approach marries simple chemistry to proven semiconductor technology-its Watson meets Moore. The result is a sequencing system that is simpler, faster, more cost effective and scalable than any other technology available. The semiconductor has transformed every industry it's touched. Just as the microprocessor enabled desktop computing to displace the mainframe, semiconductor technology will inevitably democratize sequencing, putting it within the reach of any lab or clinic.

Grants Honor Gordon Moore and James D. Watson

The first award will be announced on April 19th, to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the 1965 publication of Dr. Moore's landmark paper in Electronics Magazine, which proposed what is now known as Moore's Law. The second grant will be announced on April 25th, to commemorate the 57th anniversary of the 1953 publication of Dr. Watson and Dr. Francis Crick's paper in Nature on the double helix structure of DNA.


More details on Ion Torrent technology and the Ion PGM grant program will be available on the Ion Torrent website after Dr. Rothberg's keynote address on Feb. 27 at this year's Advances in Genome Biology and Technology (AGBT) conference in Marco Island, Florida.


About Ion Torrent

Ion Torrent has developed a DNA sequencing system that directly translates chemical signals (A, C, G, T) into digital information (0, 1) on a semiconductor chip. The result is a sequencing system that is simpler, faster, more cost effective and scalable than any other technology available. Because Ion Torrent produces its proprietary semiconductor chips in standard CMOS factories, we leverage the $1 trillion dollar investment that has been made in the semiconductor industry over the past 40 years. This enables us to directly benefit from four decades of exponential improvement in semiconductor technology, usually expressed as Moore's Law.


The company was founded in August 2007 by Jonathan Rothberg, a pioneer of high-speed, massively parallel DNA sequencing. Ion Torrent is based in Guilford, Connecticut with offices in San Francisco. Ion Torrent will launch the Ion Personal Genome Machine sequencer in 2010. For more information about Ion Torrent, visit  To apply, go to the grant application.

CONTACT: Ion Torrent
Wes Conard, Director, Corporate Communications
W: 415-241-0510 415-241-0510 X204
C: 415-385-4455 415-385-4455