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- Establishment of MGI's αLab at Hong Kong Science Park to expand its global R&D footprint
MGI – deep-rooted in the Greater Bay Area, growing in Hong Kong and going global
(Hong Kong, 21 September 2023) – Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) partner company MGI Tech Co. Ltd. (or its subsidiaries, together referred to “MGI”) officially announced the opening of its αLab laboratory at Hong Kong Science Park. Integrating artificial intelligence (AI) research and development (R&D), application transformation and an incubation platform, αLab will further expand MGI’s global R&D footprint and expedite biotech development in the Greater Bay Area by leveraging Hong Kong’s unique advantages in innovation and technology (I&T) and internationalisation.
Ms Lillian Cheong, Under Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry of the HKSAR, visited αLab on its opening day. Guests including Dr Grace Lau, Head of Institute for Translational Research of HKSTP, Mr Duncan Yu, President of MGI, Ms Hui Jiang, Chief Operating Officer of MGI, Dr Ming Ni, Senior Vice President of MGI, and Dr Meng Yang, Assistant to the General Manager of MGI attended and witnessed the opening ceremony.
Ms Lillian Cheong, Under Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry of the HKSAR, said in her speech: “I am very pleased that MGI has chosen to locate its αLab at Hong Kong Science Park. The National 14th Five-Year Plan clearly supports Hong Kong’s development into an international I&T centre, and the Hong Kong I&T Development Blueprint announced by the HKSAR Government last year also recommends focusing on the development of industries including life and health technology, AI and data science. The fact that MGI is now expanding its business in Hong Kong demonstrates that Hong Kong's focused and vigorous industrial policy over the past year has succeeded in promoting the development of the I&T industry. I hope that MGI will capitalise on Hong Kong’s unique advantages of strong R&D capabilities, international scientific research systems, and global connectivity to accelerate the pace of global collaboration and further shine in the field of life and health technology.”
Dr Grace Lau, Head of Institute for Translational Research of HKSTP, said: “We are excited to have MGI joining HKSTP's I&T ecosystem. As the largest I&T ecosystem in Hong Kong, HKSTP is committed to promoting the translation of R&D outcomes into market-ready applications. The opening of αLab at Hong Kong Science Park will provide support in data analysis, machine learning and artificial intelligence for frontier research in gene sequencing and will further expand the application of precision medicine. We believe that MGI’s new joining will attract more top-notch research talents to Hong Kong and reinforce Hong Kong's status as the world’s leading biotech hub.”
Mr Duncan Yu, President of MGI, said: “The opening of αLab at Hong Kong Science Park is a key step in MGI’s globalisation strategy, and we look forward to creating a polymerisation effect in Hong Kong. In the future, our second phase lab DCS Lab will empower and advance three fields in frontier science, namely population genomics, single-cell omics and spatiotemporal omics with MGI’s state-of-the-art tools and technology, unleashing infinite possibilities for the life science industry.”
Smart Lab, as an important constituent of αLab, is a life information system providing digital management and environmental monitoring from sample extraction to data analysis. Equipped with individual systems for information management, environmental monitoring and robot transfer, as well as MGI's ZTRON Pro data platform, Smart Lab delivers ultimate lab compliance, modularisation, automation, standardisation, informatisation, and intelligentisation to achieve total quality management. The opening of αLab also marks the first application of Smart Lab in Hong Kong, which sets to address pain points such as inefficiency and overcomplexity due to manual operation. More and more lab technicians would be freed from repetitive and tedious labour and can instead devote more time and energy to higher-value work.
In addition to the Smart Lab, αLab also houses MGI’s first AI laboratory, which will serve as a R&D centre for MGI's cutting-edge AI technologies and industry applications, and will promote the application of AI in MGI's products and services, including data processing and analysis, machine learning, natural language processing, and computer vision, with a view to breaking traditional business models, improving overall efficiency, and solving long-term problems in the industry. Early this year, the “EvoPlay” algorithm model invented by the R&D team of MGI was published in the prestigious scientific journal “Nature Machine Intelligence”, which recognised MGI’s R&D work in AI.
In the future, MGI will open its second phase lab DCS Lab, which will empower and advance three fields in frontier science, namely population genomics, single-cell omics and spatiotemporal. DCS Lab will introduce MGI's DNBelab C-TaiM 4 single-cell platform for droplet generation, DNBelab C4 pocket single-cell lab, and DNBSEQ-T20×2 ultra-high-throughput sequencer and other high-tech equipment.
Currently, MGI has business presence in more than 90 countries and regions across six continents, serving a cumulative total of more than 2,400 users globally. In addition, MGI has set up scientific research and production bases, training and after-sales service centres in various countries and regions around the world. The establishment of αLab at Hong Kong Science Park will further enhance MGI’s strengths in the R&D and manufacturing of high-end tools for life sciences, expand its global R&D footprint, and expedite biotech development in the Greater Bay Area, realising MGI’s mission of “being deep-rooted in the Greater Bay Area, growing in Hong Kong and going global”.
Photo 1: Ms Lillian Cheong, Under Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry of the HKSAR, visited αLab and exchanged insights with Mr Duncan Yu, President of MGI.
Photo 2: Dr Grace Lau, Head of Institute for Translational Research of HKSTPC (fourth from left), Mr Duncan Yu, President of MGI (fourth from right), Ms Hui Jiang, Chief Operating Officer (first from left), Dr Ming Ni, Senior Vice President (second from right), and Dr Meng Yang, Assistant to the General Manager of MGI (third from right) attended and witnessed the opening ceremony.
Photo 3: MGI’s αLab officially opened at Hong Kong Science Park.