Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Prenatal Testing Firm BillionToOne Closes $15M Series A Financing

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – BillionToOne, a Bay Area startup developing a molecular counting technology for noninvasive prenatal testing, said today that is has closed an oversubscribed $15 million Series A financing round.

Hummingbird Ventures and NeoTribe Ventures led the investment round, with participation from Y Combinator, Civilization Ventures, Fifty Years, 500 Startups Istanbul, and HOF Capital.

BillionToOne said that it will use the funding to support its innovation, growth, and the launch of its first product, Unity, a noninvasive prenatal test (NIPT) for recessively inherited single-gene disorders.

The company claims that its molecular counting technology will be able to detect and quantify single-gene inherited disorders like cystic fibrosis and spinal muscular atrophy because of its extremely high sensitivity.

"BillionToOne's molecular counter uses specifically designed molecular standards that encode the molecular count information in sequencing data in a way that can be decoded using machine learning algorithms," a company spokesperson said in an email. "This allows us to get extremely quantitative molecular counting information from any sequencing technology."

In a statement, BillionToOne Cofounder and CEO Oguzhan Atay added that the technology "improves the resolution of cell-free DNA testing by over a thousand-fold, meaning we can detect disorders other tests can't. The result is an increase in accuracy at a much more granular level."

The firm said that its Unity test will be available later this spring and will be the only prenatal cystic fibrosis and spinal muscular atrophy screening option that tests fetal cell-free DNA using a single tube of the mother's blood. BillionToOne also plans to move into the oncology liquid biopsy market next year.

The Scan

Positive Framing of Genetic Studies Can Spark Mistrust Among Underrepresented Groups

Researchers in Human Genetics and Genomics Advances report that how researchers describe genomic studies may alienate potential participants.

Small Study of Gene Editing to Treat Sickle Cell Disease

In a Novartis-sponsored study in the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers found that a CRISPR-Cas9-based treatment targeting promoters of genes encoding fetal hemoglobin could reduce disease symptoms.

Gut Microbiome Changes Appear in Infants Before They Develop Eczema, Study Finds

Researchers report in mSystems that infants experienced an enrichment in Clostridium sensu stricto 1 and Finegoldia and a depletion of Bacteroides before developing eczema.

Acute Myeloid Leukemia Treatment Specificity Enhanced With Stem Cell Editing

A study in Nature suggests epitope editing in donor stem cells prior to bone marrow transplants can stave off toxicity when targeting acute myeloid leukemia with immunotherapy.