Molecular diagnostics firm Biodesix announced this week that it has raised $7.1 million in a Series C funding round.
The funding will go toward ongoing commercialization efforts for VeriStrat, the company's protein biomarker-based companion diagnostic for non-small cell lung cancer. Existing shareholders contributed $5.1 million, with the remaining money coming from five new investors.
"This new investment will allow us to broaden and accelerate commercialization activities for VeriStrat including expanding our studies of VeriStrat's utility with new drug combinations" for lung cancer patients, Biodesix CEO David Brunel said in a statement.
Biodesix launched VeriStrat commercially in May 2009, offering it out of its CLIA-accredited laboratory. In June, Jennifer Hedrick, the company's senior director of marketing, told ProteoMonitor that it also planned to develop the test for IVD use, but was waiting until the US Food and Drug Administration provided clearer guidelines on the IVD process (PM 06/25/2010).
The company is also looking to apply the test for use with diseases beyond lung cancer, including colorectal cancer, head and neck cancer, and pancreatic cancer.
Last week Biodesix received $1.4 million in grants through the Qualified Therapeutic Discovery Program, $244,479 of which will go toward continued development of VeriStrat. The remainder of the grant money will be used for work on the company's CancerDetect test for the early detection of lung cancer as well as the development of mass spec-based diagnostics for prostate cancer, inflammatory colitis, and autoimmune liver disease (PM 11/05/2010).