Global X ETFs, a New York-based provider of exchange-traded funds, has launched the 13th fund in its Thematic Growth suite, the Global X Genomics & Biotechnology ETF (GNOM). Designed to track the Solactive Genomics Index, which was developed using Solactive’s proprietary Natural Language Processing algorithm ARTIS, the fund holds a basket of companies that potentially stand to benefit from advances in the field of genomic science, such as companies involved in gene editing, genomic sequencing, genetic medicine/therapy, computational genomics, and biotechnology.
ARTIS utilises advanced algorithms to parse large volumes of public documents evaluating companies’ relevancy to various themes or topics. Going beyond a solely qualitative approach, the sophisticated procedure ranks potential index constituents according to proprietary criteria, not only considering a company’s exposure to a theme but also the company’s importance to the theme.
Timo Pfeiffer, Head of Research of Solactive, says: “This index combines two very cutting-edge subjects: one is the topic itself, genomics, which is a megatrend bearing incredible potential. Its innovations will contribute to medical and therefore societal paradigm shifts, paving the way for discoveries in smart technology and personalised medicine. We are very proud to have found a kindred spirit in Global X, which is also a player that dares to disrupt the industry in the space of thematic ETFs.”
GNOM’s launch comes at a time when the DNA sequencing market is experiencing significant growth, with estimates expecting the market to grow from USD6.2 billion in 2017 to USD25.5 billion by 2025 – representing a compound annual growth rate of 19 per cent. As a result of significant technological advances in the field, it’s estimated that anyone with USD100 can now sequence their DNA, down from the USD100 million it was estimated to cost in 2001.
“The wide-ranging and transformative health benefits from advancements in genomic technologies are astounding,” says Michael Hoffmann, research analyst at Global X. “We’re eager to see how investors engage with GNOM as a tool for accessing this disruptive theme.”
Breakthroughs in genomic science can present new treatments to help patients recover from what were once believed to be incurable afflictions. Scientists have identified more than 50,000 genetic diseases caused by single-gene mutations, many of which are likely to be treated through genomic approaches, including several methods that have already begun to receive FDA approval.
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