From a cleaner freight train to an automated beehive, a way to recycle fabric, and other bold,
new technologies, the 5th annual awards honor the products, concepts, companies, policies, and designs that are pursuing innovation for the good of society and the planet.
Cambridge, Mass., May 4, 2021 — Sherlock Biosciences, an Engineering Biology company dedicated to making diagnostic testing better, faster and more affordable, has been named a finalist in the “On the Rise” and honorable mention in the “Health and Pandemic Response” categories for its Sherlock™ CRISPR SARS-CoV-2 kit as part of Fast Company’s 2021 World Changing Ideas Awards, announced today. These awards honor the businesses, policies, projects and concepts that are actively engaged and deeply committed to pursuing innovation when it comes to solving health and climate crises, social injustice or economic inequality.
Sherlock Biosciences’ SARS-CoV-2 test utilizes the SHERLOCK diagnostic platform, which can achieve single molecule detection of nucleic acid targets; its name stands for Specific High Sensitivity Enzymatic Reporter unLOCKing. SHERLOCK utilizes CRISPR activity for “smart amplicon detection” and can be adapted for use with existing diagnostic instruments, improving time to result due to its significant multiplexing capacity. When a specific sequence of DNA or RNA is present, a CRISPR enzyme is activated and, much like a pair of scissors, starts cutting nearby genetic material, releasing a fluorescent signal that indicates a positive result. In May 2020, Sherlock received Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the test kit, the first FDA-authorized use of CRISPR technology.
Now in its fifth year, the World Changing Ideas Awards showcase 33 winners, more than 400 finalists, and more than 800 honorable mentions—with Health and Wellness, AI & Data among the most popular categories. A panel of eminent Fast Company editors and reporters selected winners and finalists from a pool of more than 4,000 entries across transportation, education, food, politics, technology and more. Plus, several new categories were added, including Pandemic Response, Urban Design and Architecture. The 2021 awards feature entries from across the globe, from Brazil to Denmark to Vietnam.
Showcasing some of the world’s most inventive entrepreneurs and companies tackling exigent global challenges, Fast Company’s Summer 2021 issue (on newsstands May 10) highlights, among others, a lifesaving bassinet; the world’s largest carbon sink, thanks to carbon-eating concrete; 3D-printed schools; an at-home COVID-19 testing kit; a mobile voting app; and the world’s cleanest milk.
“Earlier this year, we were honored to be named to Fast Company’s annual list of the World’s Most Innovative Companies; now, we’re equally honored to be named a finalist and honorable mention for this year’s World Changing Ideas alongside many impressive industry peers,” said Rahul Dhanda, co-founder, president and CEO of Sherlock Biosciences. “As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect communities and families around the globe, we are proud to continue to innovate technologies that will help to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus worldwide and empower individuals to take control of their healthcare in situations where it otherwise would not be possible.”
“There is no question our society and planet are facing deeply troubling times. So, it’s important to recognize organizations that are using their ingenuity, impact, design, scalability, and passion to solve these problems,” says Stephanie Mehta, editor-in-chief of Fast Company. “Our journalists, under the leadership of senior editor Morgan Clendaniel, have discovered some of the most groundbreaking projects that have launched since the start of 2020.”
About the World Changing Ideas Awards
World Changing Ideas is one of Fast Company’s major annual awards programs and is focused on social good, seeking to elevate finished products and brave concepts that make the world better. A panel of judges from across sectors choose winners, finalists, and honorable mentions based on feasibility and the potential for impact. With the goals of awarding ingenuity and fostering innovation, Fast Company draws attention to ideas with great potential and helps them expand their reach to inspire more people to start working on solving the problems that affect us all.
About Sherlock Biosciences
Sherlock Biosciences is dedicated to providing global access to the simplest and most accurate tests that empower individuals to control their own healthcare. Through its Engineering Biology platforms, the company is developing applications of SHERLOCK™, a CRISPR-based method for “smart amplicon detection,” and INSPECTR™, a synthetic biology-based molecular diagnostics platform that is instrument-free. SHERLOCK and INSPECTR can be used in virtually any setting without complex instrumentation, opening up a wide range of potential applications in areas including precision oncology, infection identification, food safety, at-home tests and disease detection in the field. In 2020, the company made history with the first FDA-authorized use of CRISPR technology. For more information visit Sherlock.bio.
Katie Engleman, 1AB