Kastanienallee 24
D-10435 Berlin
Phone: +49-30-24 34 5-0

Alexander Olek, CEO
Privately Held


Epigenomics is a trans-Atlantic biotechnology company with headquarters in Berlin and a wholly owned subsidiary in Seattle. Seattle-based ORCA Biosciences was merged into Epigenomics Inc. in the fall of 2000. Epigenomics said it is the world s first and only company focusing exclusively on DNA methylation and its importance in the post-genomic age. By detecting DNA methylation patterns, the “on” and “off” signs for genes, Epigenomics can create a digitized readout (Digital Phenotype) for each tissue. The comparison of healthy and sick tissue enables an exact diagnosis of disease at a very early stage and opens up new therapeutic opportunities.

Epigenomics’ Diagnostics Business Unit builds on identifying and validating epigenetic-based markers of disease (digital phenotypes). Epigenomics’ Pharmaceutical Enabling Techology is used for detection and interpretation of methylation status of genes. Application to preclinical studies and clinical trials will enable the stratification of patient populations into responders and nonresponders.

The DNA methylation detection technology suite that Epigenomics has developed enables efficient detection of DNA methylation patterns on an industrial scale. Consisting of a combination of chemically treated DNA, highly multiplexed amplifications, high-density arrays and MALDI-mass spectrometry, Epigenomics’ technology makes the detection of hundreds of thousands of DNA methylation signals possible. These signals can be digitized into a long string of ones and zeros, creating a Digital Phenotype that reflects genetic activity in a particular cell or tissue, i.e., whether it is functioning normally or not.


Epigenomics collaborators include BIOBASE GmbH, Biopsytec GmbH, the German Cancer Research Center, the University of Missouri and the The Babraham Institute. It also has a collaboration with MethylGene Inc. to investigate gene (DNA) methylation changes of patients enrolled in Phase II trials of MG98, a second-generation antisense oligonucleotide that inhibits DNA methyltransferase mRNA.