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Diagnostics Start-Up Closes $33.5M Early-Stage Financing

DNA strand (NSF)

(James. J. Caras, National Science Foundation)

Foundation Medicine Inc., a developer of cancer genome diagnostics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has expanded its early stage financing to $33.5 million, adding new venture investors. The additional financing is expected to help the company continue its research  work on cancer diagnostic tests.

The new funding from Google Ventures and venture capital company Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), supplements Foundation Medicine’s initial series A financing, the first round of equity funding after seed capital, from a group led by investment company Third Rock Ventures.

Foundation Medicine was founded last year to devise comprehensive diagnostic tests that analyze relevant tumor genomes and other molecular information in individual patients’ cancers and connect the results to a knowledge base of clinical data to help oncologists personalize treatment. Because patients whose cancers have specific genetic alterations are difficult to recruit in sufficient numbers for clinical trials, the company plans to report test results to physicians through a secure Web site linking genomic data to relevant, publicly available scientific and medical information. Physicians can then recommend cancer treatment approaches tailored to each patient’s molecular subtype.

The company founders — Eric Lander, Todd Golub, Levi Garraway, and Matthew Meyerson — conduct research on genomics at the Broad Institute, Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and MIT. They also serve on a company advisory committee.

Brook Byers, partner, KPCB, and Krishna Yeshwant, partner, Google Ventures, will join Foundation Medicine’s board of directors.

Read more: Google to Partner with, Finance DNA Sequencing Data Company

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