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SAN FRANCISCO, June 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- MedGenome, the leading provider of genomic diagnostics for oncology in India and a leading provider of oncological bioinformatics to the West, today announced it has raised Series A funding in the amount of $4 million from a veteran group of executives in the technology, analytics and data science sectors. The Series A round was led by Papillon Capital's Kartik Kumaramangalam and Emerge Venture's Mahesh Pratapneni. Other investors included Dmitri Mehlhorn, former president of Bloomberg BNA Legal; Ambiga Dhiraj, co-founder of MuSigma; Tim McLaughlin, CEO of Siteworx; and Dan Peterson, former CEO of CASHNet. Mehlhorn and MuSigma CEO Dhiraj Rajaram (a member of Fortune's 2013 "40 Under 40" list) will join the MedGenome Board of Directors.
MedGenome's mission is to unlock the power of India's genetics to better treat cancer and other diseases within India and around the world. To do this, the company uses next-generation DNA sequencing and sophisticated data analytics to advance the burgeoning fields of genomic oncology and personalized medicine. As the leader in providing next-generation DNA sequencing services to the Indian market, the company leverages its capabilities and experience in India to provide researchers and physicians with OncoMD, a proprietary bioinformatics database of more than 1.2 million cancer-related mutations.
"Given its competitive advantages in highly skilled medical professionals, genetics, bioinformatics, software and data management personnel, India is a natural hub for application of genomics to the practice of medicine," said Sam Santhosh, chairman and CEO of MedGenome. "MedGenome is already the leader in the Indian genomics market. The new resources from this investment round will enable us to expand our research and make our tools more widely available to clinicians and hospitals developing personalized treatment strategies for cancer patients around the world."
"Genetic homogeneity-such as that found in India-is vital to unraveling the genetic basis of many human diseases. Due to its population history, India has naturally done a genetic experiment that geneticists can only dream of doing with animal models," said Santhosh. "This vast genetic resource, created over thousand of years, will provide an unprecedented genetic resource for India and the world when deciphered appropriately."
Large pharmaceutical companies and major hospitals in the U.S. and India are already using MedGenome's capabilities to help pinpoint actionable mutations that will help match patients with approved therapy or enable their enrollment in open clinical trials for new therapy under testing.
"The genomics industry has already seen critical advances from analysis of the gene pool of Iceland, due to that country's genetic homogeneity," said Dr. Andrew Peterson, Genentech research scientist and molecular biologist. "India, due to its unique history, is like hundreds of Icelands. MedGenome has been the leader in recognizing and capitalizing on this for India and the rest of the world," he said.
MedGenome was incubated from SciGenom in 2012 and is led by a seasoned management team including CEO Sam Santhosh (former CEO of California Software), COO Dr. VL Ramprasad, Dr. Amitabh Chaudhary, and Dr. Ravi Gupta. With this round of funding, the company will further invest in building its cutting-edge bioinformatics infrastructure, enhancing its facilities in India and the West, extending its sales footprint, and executing related capital expenditures.
"As industry leaders in the fields of data science, analytics, and technology, our investors know that both the Eastern and Western genomics markets are on the cusp of explosive growth," said Mehlhorn. "Together with MedGenome, we are proud to support more accurate, more affordable, and faster genomic diagnostics that can help clinicians and hospitals deliver individualized treatment for their patients."
MedGenome is a high-end genomics company dedicated to helping doctors around the world implement cancer treatment strategies tailored specifically to each patient's unique genetic code. Through its work with thousands of doctors, hospitals, and patients across India, MedGenome uses the power of genetic homogeneity to develop next-generation DNA sequencing techniques and sophisticated data analytics capabilities that significantly improve disease risk assessment, management, treatment and patient outcomes. Its proprietary OncoMD database offers insight into more than 1.2 million cancer-related mutations via a searchable catalogue that helps physicians and hospitals pinpoint patients' mutation hotspots, identify prevalent cancer types, flag potential sensitivity to therapies, and link mutations to open clinical trials. Incubated in 2012 from SciGenom Labs, the company is backed by a team of industry veterans with deep experience in genomics and Big Data technologies. For more information, visit http://www.medgenome.com/.
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