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23andMe Raises $50M in Series D Financing

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Direct-to-consumer genetics testing firm 23andMe today said that it has raised more than $50 million in a Series D financing round.

The funds will be used to expand the Mountain View, Calif.-based company's business with the goal of creating an "exponentially larger" group of genotyped individuals and using data from those individuals to conduct research. 23andMe currently has more than 180,000 customers and it aims to eventually reach one million, it said.

With its planned expansion, the company also hopes to accelerate the development of new treatments; gain a better understanding of wellness and disease prevention; and provide greater access to those who want to understand and use their genetic data in order to manage their health and well-being.

Funding will also be used to support the firm's R&D capabilities, which includes product development, genetic research, software development, recruitment, and marketing.

Participants in the round include new investor Yuri Milner, a Russian entrepreneur and venture capitalist, and existing investors including 23andMe CEO Anne Wojcicki, her husband Sergey Brin, who is a co-founder of Google, New Enterprise Associates, Google Ventures, and MPM Capital.

23andMe also announced that the price of its Personal Genome Service has been lowered to $99 effective immediately. It will continue to assess "optimal pricing strategies," it said. During the summer the company started the 510(k) approval process for the service.

"This financing represents our next step toward empowering one million individuals to approach their wellness in a completely different, personalized way," Wojcicki said in a statement. "A community of this magnitude will improve researchers' ability to quickly answer questions about genetic function and the role of environmental factors. In addition, it will enable researchers to understand medication efficacy and side effects, in both medications that exist today and medications are that are in development."

23andMe raised $31 million in a Series C round nearly two years ago.