NEW YORK – Ansa Biotechnologies said on Monday that it has closed an oversubscribed $68 million Series A financing round, bringing the company's total funding from private financings to date to $82 million.
This round was led by Northpond Ventures, with additional support from new investors RA Capital, Blue Water Life Science Advisors, Altitude Life Science Ventures, Fiscus Ventures, PEAK6 Strategic Capital, Carbon Silicon Ventures, and Codon Capital. Existing investors Mubadala Capital, Humboldt Fund, Fifty Years, and Horizons Ventures also participated in the round.
Ansa said the funding will be used to accelerate the development of its next-generation enzymatic DNA synthesis technology, build high-throughput synthesizers, and launch a DNA synthesis service. To support these initiatives, the company said it will expand its R&D and manufacturing facilities and grow its workforce across biochemistry, chemistry, engineering, bioinformatics, and operations.
A University of California, Berkeley spinout, Ansa was built upon a de novo enzymatic DNA synthesis method developed by cofounders Daniel Lin-Arlow and Sebastian Palluk. The patented method, described in a 2018 Nature Biotechnology paper, deploys polymerase-nucleotide conjugates to rapidly extend a DNA molecule one base at a time, offering "significant advantages in terms of cost, speed, and flexibility over other enzymatic synthesis approaches," the company said.
"Enzymatic DNA synthesis is rapidly becoming a commercial reality, and I believe we have the most advanced technology in terms of speed, length, and accuracy," CEO Lin-Arlow said in a statement.
"Currently, the ability to write long and complex DNA is a critical bottleneck in the broader life sciences industry. We believe Ansa’s fully enzymatic process of DNA synthesis will usher in a new era in which the delivery of high-quality and more accurate DNA sequences in a timely manner to end users will become the new industry standard," said Lily Li, principal at Northpond Ventures.
Ansa previously raised $7.9 million in September 2020 in an oversubscribed seed funding round. Last year, it announced a collaboration with Microsoft to develop a set of enzymatic reagents for sustainable DNA-based data storage. Ansa said it is actively exploring partnerships in other application areas.