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What happened

Next-generation biotech Ginkgo Bioworks Holdings (NYSE: DNA) was one of the star stocks in its sector this week. According to data compiled by S&P Global Market Intelligence, the company’s share price raced nearly 34% higher over the five market sessions. Two newly announced partnerships were a key reason, particularly the one involving artificial intelligence (AI).

So what

It’s not only the fact that the one tie-up covers AI; it’s also the company Ginkgo is teaming with. On Tuesday, the biotech announced that it has begun a strategic cloud and AI partnership with Alphabet‘s Google Cloud unit.

The term of the Ginkgo/Alphabet deal is five years, under which Ginkgo will develop large language models running on its partner’s Vertex AI platform. Google Cloud, meanwhile, is to be its primary provider of cloud computing services.

In the press release trumpeting the arrangement, Ginkgo quoted CEO Jason Kelly as saying, “With Ginkgo’s automated Foundry to generate large scale biological data, Google Cloud’s computing horsepower, and Google’s AI expertise, I can’t think of a better partner to scale AI solutions in biological engineering.”

Now what

AI is a white-hot area of investor interest right now, and any company that indicates deeper involvement in the technology is sure to win the right kind of attention from the market.

Compounding that for Ginkgo, on Thursday it announced another promising partnership. Privately held Exacta Bioscience is using Ginkgo’s agricultural research and development services for one of its projects.

This is described by the latter company as “a fermentation optimization and scale-up program to enhance one of its crop protection products, FitoRoot, paving the way for large-scale commercialization.”

Ginkgo did not provide the financial particulars of either deal in its press releases.

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