Based in southern San Francisco, Mission Bio began as a University of California spinoff in 2012, and has since pushed itself to the front of the line in single-cell analysis. Their multi-omics tech platform helps pharma companies flag protein and DNA changes at the cellular level, opening doors to novel oncology treatments.
Last week, it raised $70 million in funding in a Series C round led by Denmark’s life science investors Novo Growth. The round was also joined by Soleus Capital, Mayfield, Cota, and Agilent. This pushes Mission Bio’s total fundraising up to $120 million.
The influx in funds will largely be used to further develop Tapestri, its single-cell platform that can help researchers connect the dots between DNA and protein changes, tumor growth, and resistance to medication. The platform is also used for the characterization of cell and gene therapies. According to Robert Ghenchev, Head of Novo Growth, “We are confident the technology will be used increasingly to unlock key insights into blood cancers, as well as solid tumor indications. We further see a clear opportunity in drug development, where the technology can bring great impact to patients’ lives.”
Mission Bio CEO Charlie Silver expressed in an interview with Endpoints News that “We want this everywhere. Everywhere where therapy resistance is important — and it’s important for most of oncology.” Silver’s company already casts a wide net throughout academia and industry. Tapestri is currently used by such big names as LabCorp, Agios, Onconova Therapeutics, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Stanford, and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, as well as a handful of unnamed partnerships within Big Pharma.
The platform was cited in an MD Anderson study in the journal Blood, in which researchers were able to utilize Tapestri to pinpoint aggregations of cancer cells whose mutations hindered patient response to therapeutic intervention. Another study, published in Blood Advances in May, helped Agios uncover resistance mechanisms to their drug Tibsovo.
Studies like these have driven an increase in demand for Tapestri, which the $70 million will help Mission Bio be able to meet. They also plan on using the money to expand their R&D, including hiring and expanding within existing departments.