NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – IDbyDNA announced today that it has raised $9 million in a Series A financing round.
The University of Utah spinout company said it will use the funds to launch metagenomics-based clinical tests for infectious diseases, and to further develop DNA search technologies based on the Taxonomer metagenomics analysis platform for universal pathogen detection and host-response profiling it co-developed with the University of Utah and ARUP Laboratories.
San Francisco-based venture capital firm Artis Ventures led the financing round, with additional investments from ARUP and other private investors.
Taxonomer, which was launched in May, is meant to detect and classify pathogens more accurately, and in some cases more quickly, than some existing methods, IDbyDNA told GenomeWeb at the time. "Taxonomer was designed for NGS metagenomic analysis, and can be used for broad metagenomics-based applications [such as] pathogen detection [and] microbiome studies," President, Co-founder, and CEO Guochun Liao said then. Liao also noted that the company is open to collaborating on test projects with interested parties.
Since its launch, the company said it has registered Taxonomer users from more than 150 academic or government institutions and corporations.
"Infectious diseases are a leading cause of death. In the US, healthcare-associated infections alone affect some 20 percent of hospitalized patients," Liao said in a statement today. "This results in about $30 billion in excess medical costs annually. The key to successful, cost-effective treatment of these infections is rapid and accurate detection, especially in cases where traditional tests have proven uninformative. At IDbyDNA we are creating new means for infectious disease detection. Our approach combines the latest genome science with cutting-edge computer search technologies."