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SAN DIEGO — After a steep drop in its stock price and with mounting competition from rivals, genomics giant Illumina on Thursday launched a new line of high-powered DNA sequencers, ratcheting up the race to read genetic information accurately and cheaply.

The new instruments, dubbed the NovaSeq X Series, can churn out up to 20,000 human genomes in a year, 2.5 times the max output of the company’s current machines, executives announced. The cost of generating this data has dropped, too, from about $5 per billion DNA bases on Illumina’s last line of high-end sequencers to as low as $2 on the new products.

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