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Cancer MDx Firm Cernostics Seeks to Raise $500K

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Cancer molecular diagnostics firm Cernostics has filed a document with the US Securities and Exchange Commission saying it plans to raise $500,000.

The Pittsburgh-based company, which also has offices in Danville, Penn., did not respond to a request for comment, but in its Form D, it said that it raised $125,000 toward its targeted amount. Securities offered as part of the raise include debt, options, warrants to acquire other securities, and securities to be acquired upon exercise of option, warrants, or other rights to acquire securities.

Separately, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania said earlier this month it had made a $100,000 investment in Cernostics for the validation of a diagnostic and prognostic test that can predict the risk of developing esophageal cancer in patients with Barrett's esophagus. It is unclear whether its investment is associated with Cernostics' financing round.

Ben Franklin said the test uses a spatial systems biology approach to anatomic pathological testing, as opposed to current pathology testing, which is mostly manual and subjective. Cernostics, it added, will continue development of the test using biopsy specimens and clinical data from Geisinger Health System to select and refine biomarkers and complete software development.

Cernostics and Geisinger announced a diagnostic partnership in 2010.

The LDT test is anticipated to be commercialized and made available through Cernostics' clinical reference laboratory following additional clinical validation studies, Ben Franklin said.

Cernostics said on its website that it uses its multiplexed fluorescence microscopy and digital imaging technology, called TissueCipher Pathology, for differential detection in patient tissue samples and the development of cancer diagnostics.

In June 2010, the company, which was spun out of Cellumen in 2008, raised $2.6 million in a Series A financing round.

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