Biotechnology DAOs for Facilitating Development
Biotechnology is an area within the science sector that focuses on therapies and other products that relate to living organisms. The term refers to any practical application of life-focused sciences, so it refers to many disciplines and advancements outside the realm of healthcare.
Starting with the domestication of animals, biotechnology has had many advances that have changed the world. Some of the most well-known examples include germ theory and the fermentation process as described by Louis Pasteur in the 1800s, the use of soybean curds to cure boils in China in 600 BC, Alexander Fleming’s 1928 work on penicillin, and Gregor Mendel’s breakthroughs in genetics.
The advancement of biotechnology has occurred along with the advancement of other technologies. For example, advancements in information technology have allowed the creation of biotech DAOs, which intend to drive the development of further biotechnology advances.
What are biotech DAOs?
Biotech DAOs are a subcategory of DeSci (decentralized science). These DAOs use their decentralized, autonomous format to bring individuals together in order to solve healthcare and other challenges using biotechnology.
How does a biotech DAO work?
Biotech DAOs begin with a mission and values that unite a community of interested parties, who are the DAO’s members. Coming from different backgrounds, experiences, educational histories, skills, and capabilities, these individuals work together to fulfill the aims of the DAO.
Its initial rules are established in the form of a smart contract by a core team of members. These rules are visible to the whole community and are written onto the blockchain. Next, the DAO decides on its funding and governance structure. This is generally through issuing native tokens in exchange for fiat currency to raise funds, and these tokens give members voting rights. To date, there is no singular agreement of the best governance method or token-voting rights structure.
Once funding is completed, the DAO is put into action. From this point forward, any decisions, such as rule changes, hiring decisions, projects, and changes, will be performed through the established voting mechanism. Some biotech DAOs raise funds to distribute to individuals undertaking research, while others focus more on collaboration within the scientific community.
Notable biotech DAOs
VitaDAO: VitaDAO aims to fund early-stage longevity research organizations, encouraging them to evolve into fully-fledged biotech companies. Using the DAO’s native token, VITA, VitaDAO has raised funds for such organizations as Korolchuk Lab, Scheibye-Knudsen Lab, and Rubedo.Life. In addition to the sale of its native tokens, VitaDAO aims to turn the results of its funded research into IP NFTs to support further research.
LabDAO: LabDAO connects researchers across the globe so that they can collaborate more efficiently. The team likens it to a peer-to-peer ‘marketplace’ for scientists, wherein they can trade skills, knowledge, access to lab services and equipment, and results without the need to personally travel halfway across the world. For example, if scientist A has an experiment that needs equipment A, which scientist B has, scientist A can connect with scientist B to run the experiment and get the results. LabDAO aims to optimize biotech research costs, increase potential in the sphere, and facilitate cooperation on a global scale.
PsyDAO: PsyDAO is an emerging DAO focused on funding research. Their particular area of interest is exploring the intersection of psychedelics and mental health. While it is still in its early phase, more information about this DAO is expected to be available soon.
GenomesDAO: GenomesDAO is a “genomic data security company” with the aim of democratizing and decentralizing the area of genomics in the healthcare arena. Founded in 2018, it aims to give ownership of an individual’s genome back to the individual, targeting the security and privacy concerns surrounding DNA testing and who that data is paired with. The DAO hopes that by building a worldwide database of user-owned DNA data, in the future personalized medicine will become a reality. Unlike services such as 23&Me, it aims to ensure that ownership remains with the owner of the DNA.
CureDAO: An emerging decentralized autonomous organization, CureDAO explores how various factors, such as food, medicine and supplements, impact human health. It is an open platform that intends to unlock data in order to improve human health outcomes.
AntidoteDAO: Founded in 2021, AntidoteDAO’s mission is to fund cancer research initiatives. The DAO is still in its growth stages and wishes to utilize cryptocurrency and NFTs to directly fund cancer research. Its members will be able to vote and allocate funds to projects that are pre-approved by the DAO’s medical advisory team.
The wider DeSci ecosystem
The wider Web3 ecosystem sometimes supports DAOs. Two notable organizations in this area are:
Molecule: Molecule is a decentralized ecosystem and marketplace that funds, collaborates with, and supports early-stage biopharma research projects utilizing Web3 technology. Its network includes VitaDAO, LabDAO, and PsyDAO along with over 250 projects. The Molecule Protocol was developed to facilitate a collaborative, decentralized approach to building ecosystems for creating novel therapeutic drugs.
SCINET: SCINET is a DeSci platform that aims to change the way we currently undertake scientific research. It facilitates investment into the sciences using blockchain technology.