Cambridge startup lands $25M round for genetic sequencing play

Cambridge, MA-based Foundation Medicine has raised $25 million in a Series A, coming out of stealth mode with bold plans to create clinical lab tests that can use the latest in genetic sequencing technology to identify personalized cancer therapies for patients. As expected, Alexis Borisy, who landed as an entrepreneur-in-residence with Third Rock Ventures after getting bounced from CombinatoRx last year, was named as the new CEO. Third Rock led the round.

"Over the past decade, cancer genome centers have undertaken the detailed molecular mapping of thousands of cancers, coinciding with development of more targeted cancer therapies," said Borisy in a prepared statement. "Technology is now advancing to where it is becoming possible to analyze a patient's particular tumor comprehensively to map its specific root causes. We believe this comprehensive tumor information could prove important in selecting optimal therapy for some patients. Currently, no mechanism exists whereby clinicians, in the day-to-day practice of clinical oncology, can systematically obtain tumor information and efficiently interpret the specific molecular alterations associated with each patient's disease."

The startup has an impressive scientific pedigree. Its scientific founders include some well known figures at the Broad Institute, the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They include Eric Lander, Ph.D., Todd Golub, M.D., Levi Garraway, M.D., Ph.D., and Matthew Meyerson, M.D., Ph.D.

Mark Levin, a partner at Third Rock and former CEO of Millennium Pharmaceuticals, is taking a seat on the board.

- check out Foundation Medicine's release

ALSO: Catabasis Pharmaceuticals has raised $7.7 million in new financing. The money is part of a $39.7 million round that the developer is planning. Story