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Microbiome Firm Second Genome Completes $5M Series A Round

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Microbiome technology firm Second Genome today announced the closing of a Series A financing round that raised $5 million.

The round was co-led by new investors Advanced Technology Ventures and Morgenthaler Ventures, as well as existing investors Wavepoint Ventures, Seraph Group, and individual investors.

The company, which was founded in 2009 as PhyloTech, also said that Mike Carusi of ATV and Jason Lettmann of Morgenthaler have joined its board.

Based in San Francisco, Second Genome will use the funds to further develop its microbiome-based personalized medicine solutions for gastrointestinal diseases and disorders. The company has developed a high-throughput platform for rapid microbiome signature identification and validation, called the Microbiome Signature Discovery Platform.

The platform is based on the company's proprietary informatics pipeline and its PhyloChip assay, a hybridization-based method for identifying and measuring the relative abundance of more than 50,000 microbial taxa, Second Genome said on its website. It added that the assay "leverages 1.1 million probes targeting the 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequence."

The platform will be used to develop personalized medicine approaches to diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, antibiotic-associated diarrhea, and necrotizing enterocolitis. Second Genome is partnering with academic researchers and commercial entities, including developers of probiotic, nutraceutical, and pharmaceutical products, to investigate the impact of these therapies on the gut microbiome and to develop signatures for improved response.

"Our ability to analyze the entire microbiome and to identify signatures gives us a key set of tools to unlock the potential of microbiome-based personalized medicine in major disease areas," Corey Goodman, co-founder of Second Genome and chairman of its board, said in a statement.

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