Christopher Benoit joins TwinStrand™ Biosciences as CEO

Company prepares to launch Duplex Sequencing™ platform, which enhances existing DNA sequencing resolution by 100,000-fold

SEATTLE, WA — July 9th, 2018 — TwinStrand™ Biosciences today announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Christopher Benoit as Chief Executive Officer and elected him to the Board of Directors.

“This is the perfect time for Chris to assume the role of CEO of TwinStrand™. Since spinning out of the University of Washington in 2016, we have refined our Duplex Sequencing™ technology, which offers unprecedented accuracy, in preparation for its commercial launch. Duplex Sequencing™ can detect genetic variants even when only a single mutant cell is present amongst millions of normal cells. We have established a powerful patent portfolio, and our technology continues to be widely recognized and cited in the peer-reviewed literature” said TwinStrand™ co-Founder and CSO Dr. Jesse Salk.

TwinStrand™ is poised to enable a new era in ultra high-resolution genetic analysis. The Company will leverage Chris’ track record of success building life science tools’ businesses to capitalize on our strong scientific and clinical foundation and deliver valuable solutions for improving human health. TwinStrand™ is ready to transition from a stealth-mode, R&D organization into a key player in the genetic analysis community. Chris’ proven entrepreneurial leadership, deep market knowledge and global network are a perfect complement to the technical team that has built this transformative technology.

Prior to joining TwinStrand™, Chris co-founded Enzymatics, a global leader in the OEM supply of enzymes for genetic analysis that was ultimately acquired by QIAGEN in 2014. In his role at Enzymatics, Chris created the company’s operational, quality, and global commercial systems, which he leveraged to deliver more than 100% year-over-year growth for 5 straight years. An expert in building lean, commercially-focused life science companies, Chris is also an active life science investor and a member of the board at TangenDX, a point-of-care molecular diagnostics firm.

“I met Jesse Salk at the AGBT genomics conference in 2015. I enjoy mentoring scientist entrepreneurs and as our relationship grew and I learned more about Jesse and the power of Duplex Sequencing™ to answer elusive, demanding questions in biology and medicine, my desire to help get this important technology into the market grew into first a Board appointment and now leadership of the company. I am excited to apply my experience as a scientist, entrepreneur, and commercial professional to its fullest potential to lead TwinStrand™ through this important stage in the company’s growth.”

About TwinStrand™ Biosciences:
TwinStrand™ Biosciences was founded to commercialize Duplex Sequencing™, a technology that increases the accuracy of existing DNA sequencing systems by greater than 100,000 fold. Duplex Sequencing™ enables high-confidence, actionable, rare-variant detection in key markets such as cancer diagnostics, genotoxicity, and forensics. Learn more at www.twinstrandbio.com

Please direct media inquiries to:
Chad Decker
TwinStrand Biosciences
+1.484.280.2759
Cdecker@twinstrandbio.com

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NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – University of Washington spinout TwinStrand Biosciences has raised around $2 million in seed funding and opened a next-generation sequencing laboratory in Seattle. The startup plans to commercialize technology known as Duplex Sequencing™ for applications such as oncology and forensics…

… “When your sensitivity improves enough to get above the technical background, we see mutations that occur in healthy people that look identical to mutations that occur in cancer,” Salk said. And, he added the mutations occur at different levels depending on the person’s age and environmental exposures. “Just seeing a mutation that looks like a cancer mutation doesn’t mean that you have cancer,” he said. And, the work highlights the challenges of using liquid biopsy analysis to screen healthy individuals for cancer.

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