Genomics plc was founded by four academics from the University of Oxford – Professor Peter Donnelly, Professor Gil McVean, Dr Gerton Lunter and Dr Chris Spencer. In the early years, the team worked from a single serviced office above a pharmacist on the outskirts of Oxford. In 6 years, we have grown to more than 100 people – more than half of whom hold PhDs – and established three offices in the UK and the US.
A message from our CEO
I have always believed that understanding human genetics is the key to improving medicine and healthcare.
As an academic, I was fortunate to lead and be centrally involved in many of the national and international projects working to understand the links between genetics, health, and disease. But it became clear to me that the huge advances being made in the field of genetics were not being translated to better healthcare for real people. I had been part of an extraordinary scientific leap forward, with revolutions across biological, statistical, and data science spheres. But no-one had yet applied the science – the power of genomics – in a way that would change how we approach health and healthcare.
My co-founders Professor Gil McVean, Dr Chris Spencer and Dr Gerton Lunter and I established Genomics plc to close that gap. Our vision is to develop and harness world-leading science in genomics to change people’s lives for the better. Genetics in medicine is not merely about rare disease or major cancer genes: it is about forging new and better ways for understanding, treating, and preventing common disease.
Together, we are working towards a world in which we can understand the mechanisms of disease well enough to produce effective and tailored medicines, and one in which we routinely identify and target those people most at risk of all the common and chronic diseases. Our vision of genomic prevention is one in which doctors and health care systems can deliver care before people get sick.
I’m incredibly proud to be at the centre of this transformation, and to be leading a team of the best and brightest minds in the business, all committed to delivering healthier, better quality lives for us all.
Professor Sir Peter Donnelly, CEO and Co-Founder
From genomics to Genomics plc
DNA double helix structure identified Rosalind Franklin, James Watson and Francis Crick discover the structure of DNA.
Genetic code deciphered Marshall Nirenberg and colleagues discover how DNA codes for amino acids through RNA.
Sanger sequencing developed DNA is sequenced for the first time, using a method that can easily be automated.
Human Genome Project begins The international scientific research project to sequence the first human genome is launched.
Human Genome Project is completed The complete genome is published early, thanks to advances in sequence analysis and collaboration between international groups.
Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium genome wide association study Landmark British collaboration into the genetic origins of eight common diseases, chaired by Peter Donnelly.
100,000 Genomes Project Genomics England establishes a major initiative to sequence entire genomes from NHS patients suffering rare diseases or cancers.
Genomics plc is founded Peter Donnelly, Gil McVean, Gerton Lunter and Chris Spencer co-found Genomics plc, and complete a £10.3m fundraise.
UK Biobank generates data on 500,000 individuals Release of genome-wide genotype data on all 500,000 UK Biobank participants.
Genomics plc announces a major collaboration with Vertex Pharmaceuticals A three year collaboration is established between Genomics plc and Vertex Pharmaceuticals, to advance efforts in the development of transformative precision medicines.
Genomics plc secures $40m of equity fundingInvestors include Foresite Capital, F-Prime Capital, and Vertex.
Incorporation of Genomics Inc Genomics plc incorporates its US Subsidiary, Genomics Inc, and welcomes its first Cambridge, Massachusetts based employees.
Release of Genome UK Landmark strategy setting out the UK’s vision of using genomics in routine healthcare is published.