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Concentric by Ginkgo to Support CDC-Funded Consortium to Develop New AI-Based Technologies for Epidemic Forecasting

October 5, 2023

Led by Northeastern University, the EPISTORM center will prepare local communities and hospitals for future outbreaks

BOSTON, Oct. 5, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Ginkgo Bioworks (NYSE: DNA), which is building the leading platform for cell programming and biosecurity, today announced that its biosecurity and public health unit, Concentric by Ginkgo, will partner with Northeastern University, which has received a grant from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention over the next five years to head an innovation center led by a consortium of organizations designed to help the United States to detect and prepare for the next outbreak of infectious disease.

With the CDC's support, Northeastern will lead a nationwide consortium to develop systems to prepare local communities and hospitals across various geographic regions—including rural areas—for outbreaks, according to the university's announcement.

EPISTORM: The Center for Advanced Epidemic Analytics and Predictive Modeling Technology, will be headed by Alessandro Vespignani, director of Northeastern's Network Science Institute and Sternberg Family Distinguished University Professor. Concentric will contribute its unique blend of computational epidemiology, risk modeling, and social science expertise, supported by an extensive laboratory network.

Concentric will help develop analytic tools by applying new technologies, such as epidemic modeling and analytics using travel-based pathogen genomic data and wastewater testing, digital biointelligence, and an advanced AI framework for selecting optimal response measures during epidemics. Concentric will also support development of new AI-based early warning systems capable of synthesizing multiple indicators to anticipate sharp changes of disease activity.

Led by Northeastern, the EPISTORM consortium includes Boston University, Indiana University, the University of Florida and the University of California at San Diego. Other members are the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center, MaineHealth, and Northern Light Health.

"We are thrilled to partner with CDC, Northeastern University, and the EPISTORM consortium to develop new technologies for early warning and epidemic forecasting," said Nita Madhav, Head of Epidemiology and Global Risk Analytics at Concentric by Ginkgo. "Early warning can give public health officials and the national security sector the intelligence they need to make data-informed decisions about biological threats."

The national network is the first step towards creating a nationwide resource for outbreak analytics, disease modeling, and forecasting to support more effective response during public health emergencies.

"Each of the grantees will help us move the nation forward in our efforts to better prepare and respond to infectious disease outbreaks that threaten our families and our communities," said Dylan George, director, Center for Forecasting and Outbreak Analytics. "We are committed to working alongside these outstanding partners to achieve our goal of using data and advanced analytics to support decision-makers at every level of government."

About Ginkgo Bioworks
Ginkgo Bioworks is the leading horizontal platform for cell programming, providing flexible, end-to-end services that solve challenges for organizations across diverse markets, from food and agriculture to pharmaceuticals to industrial and specialty chemicals. Ginkgo's biosecurity and public health unit, Concentric by Ginkgo, is building global infrastructure for biosecurity to empower governments, communities, and public health leaders to prevent, detect and respond to a wide variety of biological threats. For more information, visit and, read our blog, or follow us on social media channels such as X (formerly known as Twitter) (@Ginkgo and @ConcentricByGinkgo), Instagram (@GinkgoBioworks and @ConcentricByGinkgo), Threads (@GinkgoBioworks), or LinkedIn.

Forward-Looking Statements of Ginkgo Bioworks
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including statements regarding the capabilities and potential success of the partnership and Ginkgo's biosecurity platform. These forward-looking statements generally are identified by the words "believe," "can," "project," "potential," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "intend," "strategy," "future," "opportunity," "plan," "may," "should," "will," "would," "will be," "will continue," "will likely result," and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Many factors could cause actual future events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this press release, including but not limited to: (i) volatility in the price of Ginkgo's securities due to a variety of factors, including changes in the competitive and highly regulated industries in which Ginkgo operates and plans to operate, variations in performance across competitors, and changes in laws and regulations affecting Ginkgo's business, (ii) the ability to implement business plans, forecasts, and other expectations, and to identify and realize additional business opportunities, (iii) the risk of downturns in demand for products using synthetic biology, (iv) the uncertainty regarding the demand for passive monitoring programs and biosecurity services, (v) changes to the biosecurity industry, including due to advancements in technology, emerging competition and evolution in industry demands, standards and regulations, (vi) our ability to realize the expected benefits of merger and acquisition transactions, (vii) the outcome of any legal proceedings against Ginkgo, including as a result of recent acquisitions, (viii) our ability to realize the expected benefits from and the success of our Foundry platform programs, (ix) our ability to successfully develop engineered cells, bioprocesses, data packages or other deliverables, and (x) the product development or commercialization success of our customers. The foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. You should carefully consider the foregoing factors and the other risks and uncertainties described in the "Risk Factors" section of Ginkgo's quarterly report on Form 10-Q filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") on August 9, 2023 and other documents filed by Ginkgo from time to time with the SEC. These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and Ginkgo assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Ginkgo does not give any assurance that it will achieve its expectations.



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