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Tomaž Karčnik
PEARL-DNA Project coordinator
BioSistemika, Slovenia

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Interoperable end-to-end platform of scalable and sustainable high-throughput technologies for DNA-based digital data storage

Our data-intensive era requires innovative and sustainable data storage solutions: current technologies have hit several sustainability limits in terms of storage capacity, energy consumption and use of rare and toxic materials. A significant share of new data is not yet stored beyond the short term, and conventional storage media do not offer adequate longevity, data density or cost efficiency characteristics to meet global demand. As nature’s data storage medium of choice, DNA offers an ideal alternative with unmatched information density and stability for millennia.

The PEARL-DNA multidisciplinary consortium aims to develop and assess a novel high throughput, end-to-end PoC platform for DNA-based digital data storage built on scalable and interoperable systems for block-by-block assembled DNA. The consortium aims to substantially advance the state of the art in terms of throughput and data integrity for the mid- to long-term storage of large datasets. The innovative platform will enable 10+ MB/s data-to-DNA writing speeds in sub-nanolitre droplet DNA assembly for the very first time, while eliminating the need for plastic consumables. In addition, novel error correction, compression and data standard modules will be developed, as well as a cutting-edge storage container system for maintenance-free, long-term preservation of DNA at room temperature. The fully modular and interoperable platform will facilitate integration with other DNA-based storage solutions and accelerate the uptake of the technology. Using DNA as a commercially viable and widely applicable data storage medium strongly relies on intertwining a wide range of technologies from multiple disciplines, such as life sciences, engineering and information technology.

PEARL-DNA brings together three renowned research groups and three innovative SMEs to anchor the European innovation ecosystem into the global DNA-based digital data storage space.

This project contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 7 and 9.

BioSistemika d.o.o., SI


Funded Project

Duration01.04.2019 – 30.09.2023
Budget3.9 million euro

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