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Scimagix Plans to Expand Image Analysis Offerings with $25M in New Funding

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Scimagix, a Redwood Shores, Calif.-based developer of image informatics software, recently secured $25 million in a third round of funding led by Dresdner Kleinwort Capital and EuclidSR Partners.

The new funds build on the company’s first round of funding, defined when the company was spun out of video content management company Virage in 1998, and a series B round of $3 million from Tullis-Dickerson and angel investors.

Robert Dunkle, CEO of Scimagix, said the company plans to use this round of funding to expand the capabilities and applications for its SIMS (Scientific Image Management System) platform. SIMS is an Oracle and Web-based system for the management of image data. According to Scimagix, any type of biological image can be retrieved, reviewed, and analyzed with the system.

Scimagix, which holds the rights to Virage’s visual image retrieval technology for automatically extracting, storing, and mining visual content from multimedia images, is developing a suite of applications that build on the SIMS platform. The first of these applications, ProteinMine, was designed to analyze and search protein patterns in 2D electrophoresis gels according to visual criteria. ProteinMine was jointly developed with Pfizer Global R&D.

“Image content criteria, such as color, size, shape, texture, location, etc., are not relevant to the same degree between image types, thus making special plug-in modules necessary for visual content searching on top of SIMS,” said Suzanne Mattingly, vice president of marketing at Scimagix.

In addition to cellular analysis and mining tools, other future modules may include tissue-based image analysis and mining applications, Mattingly said. New SIMS capabilities and new applications for visual content searching will be introduced over the next several years.

“We see this as a unique opportunity to create a new space — image informatics — and to make scientific images of all types searchable,” said Mattingly.

Added Dunkle, “The overwhelmingly positive response we received during this round of financing validates our company mission and the market potential for our products.”

In addition to Pfizer, Scimagix’s customers include Eli Lilly and four other pharmaceutical companies.

— BT

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