Company will deploy funds to scale its unique targeted single-cell DNA solution for oncology and validation of CRISPR gene editing
SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (December 13, 2018)— Mission Bio, Inc., the pioneer in single-cell DNA analysis and precision genomics, today announced it raised $30 million in Series B funding from Agilent Technologies (NYSE: A), Cota Capital, LAM Capital, and Mayfield, bringing the total amount raised by the company to more than $50 million. The funds will scale its unique single-cell DNA technology, the Tapestri® Platform, by expanding the market for blood cancer research, while at the same time broadening its scope to CRISPR applications and extending into global markets.
Single-Cell Genomics, a Key to Precision Medicine
Identifying precision cancer treatments often involves broad-based next-generation sequencing (NGS). This method provides an average molecular profile of all the cells in the patient’s sample, but often masks genetic diversity and overlooks the rare cells that can drive disease progression. The Tapestri technology addresses these shortcomings to provide a more accurate lens on the complexity of disease.
A recent publication in Genome Research by MD Anderson Cancer Center validated the Tapestri Platform on clinical samples. As a follow-on to that study, Dr. Koichi Takahashi presented results at the 60th Annual Meeting for the American Society of Hematology (ASH) showcasing the largest single-cell study completed to date. In the first single-cell atlas of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), Dr. Takahashi’s team sequenced more than 500,000 cells across 70 patients using the Tapestri Platform. “These results demonstrate the power of analyzing heterogeneity for the study and treatment of cancer patients,” said Dr. Takahashi. “Tapestri’s ability to precisely identify cancer subclones throughout treatment and disease progression brings us closer to delivering on the promise of precision medicine.”
Additional studies in therapy resistance and minimal residual disease (MRD) using the Tapestri have been reported by other leading cancer centers, including the University of California, San Francisco, University of Pennsylvania, and Stanford University.
A Breakthrough in Sequencing that Delivers 50x Better Sensitivity, with Single-Base Resolution
Through its proprietary Tapestri Platform, Mission Bio reveals the molecular profile of each cell and empowers researchers and clinicians to accurately measure underlying genetic diversity, leading to more precise therapies and detection of rare diseased cells that may persist after treatment. Its breakthrough technology enables researchers and clinicians to analyze tens of thousands of individual cells in parallel and is 50 times more sensitive than traditional NGS techniques; its single-base pair resolution is orders of magnitude better than the megabase resolution of other single-cell DNA approaches.
“Cancer will kill 10 million people this year alone. We can beat cancer with more effective, dynamic therapies, but we first need to precisely understand its biology, starting with the varying genetic composition of each and every cancerous cell,” explained Charlie Silver, CEO of Mission Bio. “Minimal residual disease is a major cause of cancer relapse; overlooking even one cell could put a life at risk. With the Tapestri Platform, we can track every cell, every mutation, to better guide treatments and save patient lives.”
The Tapestri Platform is a targeted solution for high-impact applications. The solution targets disease-specific content designed to inform patient care. In addition to catalog panels Mission Bio also offers custom content. Mission Bio customers have sequenced more than 1,000,000 blood cancer cells to date, and this is expected to grow 10-fold over the next six months.
Detecting CRISPR edits with precision to improve cell therapies
With the power to identify mutation co-occurrence across distinct cell populations, the Tapestri Platform can detect gene editing with the precision of single-cell resolution, providing an unprecedented level of insight into the consequences of gene editing experiments. This capability equips researchers and drug developers with the most accurate quality control method for detecting both known on-target and off-target effects of gene editing. With the increasing prevalence of gene and cell therapeutics, this technology can precisely elucidate the true efficiency and accuracy of the intended editing systems to inform therapeutic development and improve the safety and efficacy of treatments.
“The Tapestri platform’s unique quality control capabilities are strengthening our CRISPR R&D programs,” remarked Darlene Solomon, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Agilent Technologies. “Agilent’s commitment to innovation and precision medicine are well matched with Mission Bio’s Tapestri platform as it has the potential to improve patient outcomes in the fight against cancer — and that’s the most meaningful benchmark of all.”
The funding round comes a year after the company’s commercial launch of the Tapestri Platform in October 2017. Now, over a dozen leading cancer centers in the United States use Tapestri to guide their research and help better understand how clonal heterogeneity may inform treatment selection and impact patient outcomes.
To learn more about Mission Bio and how it’s moving precision medicine forward, visit www.missionbio.com.
About Mission Bio
Mission Bio delivers targeted single-cell genomics solutions for high-impact applications with Tapestri, the Precision Genomics Platform. Tapestri is the industry’s first targeted single-cell DNA sequencing platform, enabling precise detection of heterogeneity in disease progression and treatment response. Application areas include blood cancers, solid tumors, and genome editing validation. The platform includes an instrument, consumables, and analysis software, which integrate seamlessly with existing NGS workflows. With Tapestri, researchers have a highly sensitive, targeted, and customizable solution to move precision medicine forward.
Spun out of research at the University of California, San Francisco, Mission Bio is headquartered in South San Francisco, California.