Illumina acquires Enancio's compression software

Illumina Australia Pty Ltd

Wednesday, 22 July, 2020

Illumina acquires Enancio's compression software

Following its acquisition of Edico in May 2018 and cloud-based software company BlueBee in June 2020, Illumina has a new addition to its portfolio: genomic compression-software company Enancio, based in Cesson-Sévigné, France. The acquisition comes as a response to the increasing volume of genomic data that is being generated every year by Illumina’s global installed base of more than 15,000 sequencing systems — 150 petabases in 2019 alone, or the equivalent of 500 years of continuous video recordings in high definition.

Enancio’s pre-commercial, cloud-based compression technology is designed to reduce data storage costs while preserving data integrity, utilising a lossless, reference-based genomic data compressor. The DNA sequence is compressed using a reference-based method: reads are mapped on a reference genome using an ultrafast mapping scheme specifically designed for compression. A compact binary format is used to encode reads as position and a list of differences, followed by an entropy coder. Quality scores are encoded in a lossless way using a range encoder and context models adapted to the different types of quality schemes.

Enancio’s technology is said to offer optimal levels of speed and efficiency for the compression and decompression of genomic data and to complement Illumina’s other informatics solutions. It is expected to reduce data storage costs by as much as five times by compressing the output from Illumina’s sequencers from 50 to 10 GB, and will be directly integrated into Illumina’s DRAGEN as well as its other cloud storage platform services.

“Illumina continues to systematically address the data bottlenecks that are inherent with the deluge of data produced by users of our sequencing systems and as such we are pleased to welcome Enancio to the Illumina family,” said Susan Tousi, Senior Vice President of Product Development at Illumina.

“Illumina now has one of the industry’s foremost and differentiated secondary analysis tools in DRAGEN, a scalable cloud data exchange with both the Illumina Analytics Platform (IAP) and BlueBee technology, and together this fosters a cost-effective, fast and simple workflow for our customers. With Enancio and BlueBee on board, Illumina is now positioned with exceptional data cloud offerings.”

“I am honoured to join Illumina, where together we will address the data tsunami that has thrust researchers and clinicians into the digital age,” said Enancio CEO Jennifer Del Giudice. “This information tsunami is both far-reaching and complex, yet within the data lies infinite possibilities for great scientific advancements, and together with DRAGEN we’re going to make storing and transferring data more efficient and user-friendly.”

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