April 25, 2014
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About Cofactor

Cofactor is a next-generation genomics company.

Our clients are professionals that demand results as opposed to just data.

Our team of experts boasts decades of collective experience working in the Technology Development Group at the Genome Center at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. We work with some of the largest life-science, pharmaceutical, agriculture, and biofuels companies in the world. All of our clients’ projects benefit from the constant feedback process of “build, measure, learn” that is ingrained at Cofactor in our beginning-to-end service.


  • Jarret Glasscock
    Jarret GlasscockFounder and CEO

    Dr. Glasscock has spent the last 15 years bridging Molecular Genetics, Computer Science, and Sequencing technologies to provide insight to molecular systems. More than a decade was spent at Washington University’s Genome Sequencing Center. As lead of the Computational Biology Group at the Genome Center, Dr. Glasscock led a team of scientists to characterize and publish key NIH funded sequencing projects. In 2008 Dr. Glasscock left his faculty position in the department of genetics and part of the Genome Center’s Technology Development Group to found Cofactor Genomics. He has led the company to unprecedented growth and has been a key contributor to the design and analysis of the more than 1000 sequencing projects Cofactor Genomics has undertaken over the last 5 years.

  • Jon Armstrong
    Jon ArmstrongCOO

    Jon Armstrong was a research scientist with the Technology Development Group at The Genome Institute (Washington University in St. Louis) from 2001 to 2009. During that time, he was instrumental in the design of molecular tools (e.g., multi-locus sequence typing) for the characterization of single nucleotide polymorphisms in organisms such as S. aureus and uropathogenic E. coli, and diseases such as acute myeloid leukemia.

  • Dave Messina
    Dave MessinaDirector of Analysis

    Dr. David Messina has spent the last 17 years working in computational biology and genetics, training in molecular biology and human genetics at the University of Chicago, the Washington University in Saint Louis, and earning his PhD in Erik Sonnhammer’s lab in Stockholm, Sweden. He worked for 3 years at the Washington University Genome Institute as a computational biologist, developing software used for annotation, assembly assessment, and comparative sequence analysis. Dr. Messina joined Cofactor Genomics in 2012. He currently drives the computational R&D and production efforts as Cofactor’s Director of Analysis.

  • Sara Ahmed
    Sara AhmedDirector of Sequencing

    Dr. Ahmed joined Cofactor Genomics in April of 2011 after completing her PhD in Cell and Molecular Biology from Northwestern University. Her PhD work focused on gaining a better understanding of the role of DNA sequence in the three dimensional organization of genes within the nucleus. She has received training on the Illumina, Solid, 454 and Ion Torrent platforms and has expertise in library construction and sequencing across the wide spectrum of sequencing applications offered at Cofactor. In addition, Dr. Ahmed constantly strives to improve our existing product offerings while devising new library techniques to push current technologies beyond the limits specified by the most instrument providers.

Our office


  • Hobo
    HoboTop Dawg
    • Randy Soriano
      Randy SorianoAdministrative Assistant
    • Natalie LaFranzo
      Natalie LaFranzoProject Scientist
    • Casey Jowdy
      Casey JowdyProject Scientist
    • Dave Long
      Dave LongProject Scientist
    • Jamey Higginbotham
      Jamey HigginbothamMolecular Biologist
    • Ajay Khanna
      Ajay KhannaComputational Scientist
    • Andrew Benesh
      Andrew BeneshMolecular Biologist
    • Andrew Warshauer
      Andrew WarshauerMarketing Manager

    Advisory Board

    • Cheryl Morley
      Cheryl Morley
      • Dr. David Smoller
        Dr. David Smoller
        • Dr. John Leamon
          Dr. John Leamon
          • Rob Goltermann
            Rob Goltermann

            Cofactor’s Business Model is unique and simple in that it is aligned with the client’s specific goal of discovery from the very beginning.

            Cofactor’s product solutions maximize discovery, which is very different from companies that maximize data output, analysis complexity, or throughput. These goals, while important, are meaningless to Cofactor’s target clients without the end goal of discovery keeping the project in focus.

            Cofactor delivers on this promise by taking ownership and responsibility of all aspects of the project. The design, molecular manipulations, library work, sequencing, analysis, and identification of candidates. The key to success is the QC that happens after each step. The QC requirements evaluate complexity, quality, consistency, and other quantitative aspects that our ongoing validation studies have shown are critical to a successful discovery project. When these QC measures are not carried out or are not designed with the project goals in mind, the result is often lack of candidates. Or even worse, false positive/negative candidates. This is a unique model in our industry (type A), as most options fall into either a type B company or a type C company (ie. a sequencing only or analysis only company).

            Cofactor’s R&D

            Cofactor’s business model has setup a scenario where we control, assess, and change all of the variables… a perfect platform for testing and optimizing conditions to ensure discovery. Every year Cofactor spends a minimum of 20% of its scientist’s time and more than a million dollars in expenses related to testing and optimizing our discovery solutions to identify the most robust solutions to move from raw DNA/RNA to candidates. Our service solutions are the result of this testing and optimization. We spend these years and millions of dollars assessing technologies and developing the best solutions, so your team does not have to.

            “Every business is manmade. It is a result of individuals. It reflects the personalities and the business philosophy of the founders and those who have directed its affairs throughout its existence. If you want to have an understanding of any business, it is important to know the background of the people who started it and directed its past and the hopes and ambitions of those who are planning its future.”

            T. Rowe

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