Top 10 Startups Disrupting BioTech

  • 28 March 2017
  • Cas Proffitt

If you’re reading this before the future of cyborg bodies, you’ve got a (mostly) organic body. This universality of organic biology has always made biotech a hotbed for innovation and research. Some research, like the fact bacteria can use electricity to communicate across species, we may not see the implications of for years, at least not in industry. But the companies in this list are taking biology, our understanding of the field, and how we interact with living organisms to an entirely new level.

Check out the top ten startups who are disrupting biotech.

Notable Labs

Notable Labs is a research platform that helps doctors find personalized treatments for their cancer patients. Using data science, they also search for new uses of drugs and information regarding cancer progression as well as drug resistance. These aren’t just random guesses, either.

Doctors send a piece of the tumor to Notable Labs, they choose a panel of drugs, test the combinations, and then send your doctor the results.



Many people have heard of 23andMe now and have even tried the testing kits from the shelves of many pharmacies.

Basically, you send a little bit of genetic material back to the 23andMe labs via their testing kits. Then, they test your DNA to tell you your ancestry, health reports, help you find DNA relatives and message them, and more.

One especially neat function of 23andMe is the ability to run your own genetic testing before starting a family. That way, you know if you are a carrier for certain traits.



Counsyl also offers genetic testing for important aspects of life like planning a family and concerns for inherited disease. The conditions they screen for are ones where early detection and awareness can make a difference to your future.

However, unlike 23andMe, Counsyl is used by providers for patients, so you must visit a specialist for the screening. However, they do make accessing your results online and even paying your bill user-friendly and efficient.



Recombine is specifically for family planning and those in early pregnancy. They determine the risk of passing on 300+ genetic diseases to your future children.

You must visit a provider to receive the testing, but Recombine offers an easy form to locate a carrier in your area via email.



Taxa Biotechnologies

With Taxa Biotechnologies, we leave human territory and enter plant territory. They offer genetic engineering for plants as a service, so anyone can bio-engineer their own plans that are safe to sell in the US immediately after development.

For them, it started with a Kickstarter campaign to create a glowing plant that far exceeded its funding goal. From that grew Taxa Biotechnologies that now allow anyone to experiment with plant genetics without every entering a lab.





Atomwise is AI for drug discovery that harnesses deep learning to both speed up and increase success rates for drug discovery. They claim to be the “first deep learning neural network for structure-based drug design and discovery.” This combination of AI and drug discovery could yield astounding results for humankind.





Benchling’s tagline is the “operating system for life.” It finds use in research for industry and academia as an integrated software solution for molecular biology. It helps researchers track samples, keep a digital lab notebook, and even has a bioregistry system to track inventory such as cell strains that can be used to mine data.

Plus, it’s free for academics!


Genome Compiler

Genome Compiler is bringing citizen science to life and opening the world of genetic engineering to everyone. You can design within their own SaaS program, and then the physical DNA for use in modifying living things can be delivered to your door internationally.

Their platform also lets you easily collaborate with colleagues securely. Even better, it’s completely free to use.



Cambrian Genomics

Cambrian Genomics offers the hardware for laser printing DNA.

Their technologies help those who buy and sell the average $1 billion per year of DNA create “high quality sequence verified DNA to buyers in this existing/growing worldwide market.”




Gingko Bioworks

Gingko Bioworks is all about building biology to solve the world’s problems. They produce designer microbes for use in many industries including perfume, food, and, of course, research. “Organism engineers at Ginkgo learn from nature to develop new organisms that replace technology with biology.” They also offer rapid prototyping for the design of custom organisms.

Runners Up:

Which biotech companies do you think are most disruptive? Are there others you’re watching this year? Let us know in the comments below!

About Cas Proffitt

Cas is a B2B Content Marketer and Brand Consultant who specializes in disruptive technology. She covers topics like artificial intelligence, augmented and virtual reality, blockchain, and big data, to name a few. Cas is also co-owner of an esports organization and spends much of her time teaching gamers how to make a living doing what they love while bringing positivity to the gaming community.