Freelancer Limited (ASX: FLN, OTCQX: FLNCF), the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace by number of users and jobs posted, today announced it has won a US$6.7 million task order for NASA and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of the Director (OD) Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives (DPCPSI) Office of Strategic Coordination (OSC).
NIH seeks two, three-phased contests to encourage technology development in two areas of strategic significance as part of Phase II of the NIH Somatic Cell Genome Editing (SCGE) program:
A highly efficient (e.g. 50%+ editing efficiency) non-viral delivery system capable of crossing the blood brain barrier to deliver genome editing machinery to a majority of target cell types in the central nervous system.
A programmable (e.g. 3+ configurations) delivery system to deliver genome editing machinery that can target specific tissues or cell types.
Somatic cell genome editing holds great promise in treating various diseases. However, current techniques in genome editing approaches, such as those based on CRISPR-Cas9, pose many challenges that need to be overcome before they can be widely used in the clinic. For example, the delivery of genome editors to clinically relevant cells and tissues and achievement of editing efficiency that is adequate for addressing human diseases.
These contests will be administered under the America COMPETES Act and will be launched on Freelancer.com with a total prize purse of US$6,000,000 (GMV).
This is the biggest task order to date under NASA’s NOIS2 and to be selected is testimony to the company’s track record of delivery to date under the program. It is expected that FLN will generate approximately US$700,000 in net revenue contribution for this task order.
About the NIH SCGE Program
The NIH Common Fund’s Somatic Cell Genome Editing (SCGE) program is working to improve the efficacy and specificity of gene editing approaches to help reduce the burden of common and rare diseases caused by genetic changes. SCGE is developing quality tools to perform and assess effective and safe genome editing in non-reproductive (“somatic”) cells of the body. These research tools will be made widely available to the research community to reduce the time and cost required to develop new therapies.
Twelve-time Webby award-winning Freelancer.com is the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace by total number of users and projects posted. More than 60 million registered users have posted over 20 million projects and contests to date in over 2,000 areas as diverse as website development, logo design, marketing, copywriting, astrophysics, aerospace engineering and manufacturing. Freelancer owns Escrow.com, the leading provider of secure online payments and online transaction management for consumers and businesses on the Internet with over US$6 billion in transactions secured. Freelancer also owns Freightlancer & Loadshift, enterprise freight marketplaces with over 550 million kilometres of freight posted since inception. Freelancer Limited is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange under the ticker ASX:FLN and is quoted on OTCQX Best Market under the ticker FLNCF.
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