Renee Wegrzyn Slated to Lead New Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health

BOSTON, Sept. 12, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- The White House today announced that President Biden intends to appoint Renee Wegrzyn, PhD, as the first Director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H). Dr. Wegrzyn is currently the Vice President for Business Development at Ginkgo Bioworks DNA, the leading horizontal platform for cell programming. ARPA-H was established in March 2022 to drive transformative health breakthroughs that cannot readily be accomplished through traditional research or commercial activity.

"I am deeply honored to have the opportunity to shape ARPA-H's ambitious mission and foster a vision and approach that will improve health outcomes for the American people, including President Biden's Cancer Moonshot," said Dr. Wegrzyn. "Some of the problems we face every day - especially in health and disease - are so large they can seem insurmountable. I have seen firsthand the tremendous expertise and energy the U.S. biomedical and biotechnological enterprise can bring to solve some of the toughest health challenges. ARPA-H will create the transformative and collaborative space that is required to support the next generation of moonshots for health—not only for complex diseases like cancer, but also systemic barriers like supply chain gaps and equitable access to breakthrough technologies and cures for everyone."

Dr. Wegrzyn holds a PhD and BS in Applied Biology from the Georgia Institute of Technology, was a Fellow in the Center for Health Security Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative (ELBI), and completed her postdoctoral training as an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow in Heidelberg, Germany. Early in her career, she led research and development teams in private industry in the areas of biosecurity, gene therapies, emerging infectious disease, neuromodulation, synthetic biology, and diagnostics. She served as Program Manager in the Biological Technologies Office (BTO) of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), where she leveraged the tools of synthetic biology and gene editing to enhance biosecurity, support the domestic bioeconomy, and thwart biothreats. Since joining Ginkgo in August 2020, she has built out its innovation pipeline for biosecurity, developing and scaling new tools to combat infectious disease and other biological threats through broad community access.

"This is a really great moment for health and biomedical innovation. Dr. Wegrzyn stands out as a thoughtful, innovative, and practical leader," said Matt McKnight, General Manager for Biosecurity at Ginkgo. "She understands the health innovation ecosystem from every angle—from early-stage research and development to commercialization and community impact, across the public, private, and academic sectors. In her time at Ginkgo, she has been an incredible leader, and her work has shaped the emerging biosecurity industry for years to come. Renee uniquely understands what is needed in the next era of invention, and ARPA-H will benefit tremendously from being shaped by her vision."

About Ginkgo Bioworks

Ginkgo is building a platform to enable customers to program cells as easily as we can program computers. The company's platform is enabling biotechnology applications across diverse markets, from food and agriculture to industrial chemicals to pharmaceuticals. Ginkgo has also actively supported a number of COVID-19 response efforts, including K-12 pooled testing, vaccine manufacturing optimization and therapeutics discovery. For more information, visit www.ginkgobioworks.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. These forward-looking statements generally are identified by the words "believe," "can," "project," "potential," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "intend," "strategy," "future," "opportunity," "plan," "may," "should," "will," "would," "will be," "will continue," "will likely result," and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Many factors could cause actual future events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this press release, including but not limited to: (i) the effect of Ginkgo's business combination with Soaring Eagle Acquisition Corp. ("Soaring Eagle") on Ginkgo's business relationships, performance, and business generally, (ii) risks that the business combination disrupts current plans of Ginkgo and potential difficulties in Ginkgo's employee retention, (iii) the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted against Ginkgo related to its business combination with Soaring Eagle, (iv) volatility in the price of Ginkgo's securities now that it is a public company due to a variety of factors, including changes in the competitive and highly regulated industries in which Ginkgo operates and plans to operate, variations in performance across competitors, changes in laws and regulations affecting Ginkgo's business and changes in the combined capital structure, (v) the ability to implement business plans, forecasts, and other expectations after the completion of the business combination, and identify and realize additional opportunities, (vi) the risk of downturns in demand for products using synthetic biology, (vii) the unpredictability of the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic and the demand for COVID-19 testing and the commercial viability of our COVID-19 testing business, (viii) changes to the biosecurity industry, including due to advancements in technology, emerging competition and evolution in industry demands, standards and regulations, and (ix) our ability to close and realize the expected benefits of pending merger and acquisition transactions. The foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. You should carefully consider the foregoing factors and the other risks and uncertainties described in the "Risk Factors" section of Ginkgo's quarterly report on Form 10-Q filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") on August 15, 2022 and other documents filed by Ginkgo from time to time with the SEC. These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and Ginkgo assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Ginkgo does not give any assurance that it will achieve its expectations.

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