Optalysys partnered with The Earlham Institute to create a Genetic Search System through a 2 year 6 month project that was successfully awarded £0.5m from government body Innovate UK

Optalysys are the only company with 
the proven technology and expertise 
to realise our vision and we are excited to be in partnership with them
— Dr Tim Stitt, Head of Scientific Computing, Earlham Institute


To produce a working Genetic Search System prototype for The Earlham Institute (formerly The Genome Analysis Centre) to perform sequence searches of metagenomic reads sequenced from the Human Microbiome Project Mock Community against a database consisting of 20 bacterial genomes totalling 64+ million base pairs


  • A system at Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 7 on NASA’s scale for technology product maturity (working system in a real-world environment)
  • 90% energy savings and 20x faster processing

Project Timeline

  • Started 1 June 2015 and completed Dec 2017
  • Presented Optalysys’s third generation prototype and an overview of the GENESYS project to 60 bioinformaticians on 5th November 2015 - see video
  • Jointly presented Optalysys’s fourth generation prototype with the Earlham Institute at the Advances in Genome Biology and Technology (AGBT) conference in Florida on 15th February 2017
  • The fifth generation prototype system was demonstrated in August 2017 at the ‘Genome 10K & Genome Science Conference 2017’ and the accuracy results were presented by Dr Dan Mapleson from the Earlham Institute - see video