SomaLogic and Illumina Combine Strengths to Propel Innovation in Proteomics


SomaLogic and Illumina, Inc. have announced a definitive co-development agreement where the companies will leverage the former's SomaScan® Proteomics Assay on Illumina's current and future high throughput next-generation sequencing (NGS) platforms. This partnership is representative of the rapidly growing high throughput sector of the proteomics market.

“This is truly a transformational partnership that will democratize and accelerate our understanding of the human proteome,” said SomaLogic Chief Executive Officer Roy Smythe, M.D. “It definitively signals that the era of proteomics is here and that SomaLogic, and now Illumina, will lead that era.”

The alliance is bound to bring the best of both platforms into the clinical research market with great stakes for researchers, scientists and the pharmaceutical industry. Illumina is a global market leader in DNA sequencing and array-based technologies, while SomaLogic, the first member of BioSpace’s NextGen Bio “Class of 2022”, has a 20-year history of bringing innovation in proteomic research. Its most prolific products thus far include slow off-rate modified aptamers called SOMAmer® reagents, and its proprietary SomaScan platform which provides highly reproducible measurements of circulating proteins.

Proteomics refers to effective research in identifying proteins and provides a more granular understanding of pathogens and disease biology in addition to genomics. The current proteomics market is evaluated at approximately $50 billion, and high throughput technologies are among the fastest-growing technologies in this sector. The current challenge lies in conducting large-scale proteomics experiments - with large numbers of proteins (ultra-high plexity) and large numbers of samples (ultra-high-throughput).

This agreement is aimed at solving the issue. Illumina will develop and implement NGS-based protein identification and measurement tools across laboratories, educational institutes and research centers worldwide, and facilitate the development and use of high-throughput protein pattern recognition tests, an approach pioneered by SomaLogic.

SomaLogic can currently run 7,000 protein measurements on a single 55 microliter plasma or serum sample. The co-branded product thus developed will expand this capability through simple, automated analysis and cost efficiencies in order to analyze up to 10,000 protein targets. It is noteworthy that SomaLogic has run more than 450,000 samples to date.

“This partnership brings together unique capabilities from Illumina and SomaLogic that will have a profound impact on the understanding, avoidance and treatment of human disease,” Smythe added. “Making this impact on human health has always been our goal at SomaLogic and we are excited to partner with Illumina to enable and empower proteomics and multiomics research.”

Illumina Chief Technology Officer Alex Aravanis added, “Proteins play a central role in cellular function and health, and NGS can support a greater understanding of this role by unlocking biological insights at scale. We are committed to increasing the utility of NGS, and our partnership with SomaLogic will enable existing and future NGS customers to conduct even more sophisticated high throughput multiomic studies.”

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