Merck, BMS chip in to PathAI's series B, bringing total to $75M

Seven months after banking $60 million, PathAI is at it again. Bristol-Myers Squibb and Merck's Global Health Innovation Fund is adding $15 million to the digital pathology player’s series B, funding that will ramp up its R&D into new digital tools and medical devices for the diagnosis of diseases like cancer. 

Merck and BMS join investors including LabCorp, General Catalyst and General Atlantic, which led the overall round. In addition to driving R&D, the capital will also “bolster and accelerate its growing clinical development capabilities,” PathAI said in a statement on Monday. 

Boston-based PathAI is working on artificial intelligence-based technology to help pathologists make quick and accurate diagnoses. Pathologists, who analyze tissue and fluid samples to diagnose disease, have historically analyzed such samples manually. 

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“We see a big opportunity to solve a really major and longstanding problem, which is accurately diagnosing diseases and using that information to more effectively guide treatments for patients,” said CEO Andy Beck, M.D., Ph.D., when PathAI closed its $11 million A round two years ago. 

The latest investment deepens PathAI’s relationship with Merck and BMS: “We have been fortunate to have the opportunity to work with both of these great companies and we’re excited about the confidence they’ve shown in PathAI,” Beck said in the statement. 

“Merck, BMS and other strategic partners understand that having the best possible insight into the data is incredibly important for driving continued advancements in the rapidly moving field of immuno-oncology, ultimately helping to bring new and better treatments to patients faster,” he said. 

“Artificial intelligence is an increasingly important tool in healthcare research and development, and we’ve seen the quality of PathAI’s work first-hand,” said Saurabh Saha, M.D., Ph.D., who leads the translational medicine unit at Bristol-Myers Squibb. “We are excited to take this next step in our partnership with PathAI and to work together to deliver continued scientific and therapeutic advancements for patients.”