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11/2/2010 7:58:40 AM
Gene Security Network, Inc. (GSN) today announced the closing of its $12M Series C financing. The financing round was led by Sequoia Capital and included Claremont Creek Ventures, Founders Fund, and Lightspeed Venture Partners.
GSN is a molecular diagnostics company using data informatics to enhance genetic testing of DNA. GSN has established a leadership position in the in vitro fertilization market (IVF) where its proprietary Parental Support(TM) technology diagnoses the genetic state of a single cell from an embryo.
“I am pleased that this outstanding syndicate of investors, led by Sequoia, share our mission of helping people worldwide have healthy children,” said Matthew Rabinowitz, Ph.D., President and CEO of Gene Security Network. “The new investment will accelerate the application of our Parental Support technology beyond the fertility market, into areas such as prenatal diagnostics which crucially needs tests with enhanced accuracy and coverage.”
Over four million births occur in the United States each year. Over one percent of these births result from in vitro fertilization (IVF), with over 138,000 IVF cycles occurring annually. Regardless of whether a child is conceived by IVF or traditional means, there is a 3-5% rate of birth defects or genetic illness.
“GSN has been able to rapidly commercialize its unique Parental Support technology across multiple applications in the in vitro fertilization market and is now in a strong position to expand and deliver revolutionary tools to the broader reproductive industry,” said Roelof Botha, Partner at Sequoia Capital. “Sequoia is pleased to lead this round and I very much look forward to being involved in the success of the company.”
Couples undergoing IVF have been using GSN’s Parental Support technology since 2008 for preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) to help identify embryos free of genetic disease prior to transfer to the mother’s uterus. Testing is available through most leading IVF clinics in the United States with recent expansion into international markets. The accuracy of the Parental Support diagnostic and biology it has revealed about the human embryo have been published in the journal Human Reproduction. Clinical outcomes for couples using the testing technology were recently presented at the American Society of Reproductive Medicine annual meeting in Denver, Colorado.
About Gene Security Network
Gene Security Network is a privately held molecular diagnostics company that develops bioinformatics technologies for complex testing of small quantities of genetic material. GSN’s proprietary Parental SupportTM technology is the first to leverage data informatics to deliver highly accurate single cell testing for chromosome abnormalities and genetic diseases. Parental SupportTM uses genetic information from the parents, as well as HapMap data from the Human Genome Project, to clarify the typically noisy measurements from a single cell and to generate an in silico reconstruction of the cell’s genotype. GSN operates a CLIA-certified laboratory in Redwood City, California, providing preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) testing services to guide doctors in selecting embryos during in vitro fertilization. For more information, please visit www.genesecurity.net.
About Sequoia Capital
Sequoia Capital provides venture capital funding to founders of startups who want to turn business ideas into companies. As the “Entrepreneurs Behind the Entrepreneurs”, Sequoia Capital’s Partners have worked with innovators such as Steve Jobs of Apple Computer, Larry Ellison of OracleBob Swanson of Linear Technology, Sandy Lerner and Len Bozack of Cisco Systems, Dan Warmenhoven of Network Appliance, Jerry Yang and David Filo of Yahoo!, Jen-Hsun Huang of NVIDIA, Michael Marks of Flextronics, Larry Page and Sergey Brin of Google, Chad Hurley and Steve Chen of YouTube and Dominic Orr and Keerti Melkote of Aruba Wireless Networks. To learn more about Sequoia Capital visit www.sequoiacap.com.
About Claremont Creek Ventures
Claremont Creek Ventures turbocharges the uncommon startup. As a seed and early-stage venture firm, Claremont Creek embraces emerging technologies to accelerate companies’ success in three sectors: energy conservation, healthcare IT, and security. Claremont Creek Ventures has special ties to institutions including UC Berkeley, Lawrence Livermore Labs, UC Davis and Stanford University and offers a proprietary program called LifeCycle venturing in which the firm identifies monitors and often establishes non-financial mentoring relationships with young companies well in advance of a funding event. Claremont Creek Ventures has $300 million under management in two funds. The firm has invested in approximately 20 companies including Adura Technologies, EcoFactor, Gene Security Network, and Shotspotter. For more information, please visit http://www.claremontvc.com.
About Founders Fund
The Founders Fund provides capital to transformational businesses run by world-class entrepreneurs; companies the firm has backed include Facebook, Quantcast, SpaceX, Palantir Technologies, RoboteX, and Gene Security Network. The firm, which pursues a founder-friendly investment strategy, is managed by four partners, all of whom are themselves company founders: Peter Thiel (PayPal; Palantir); Ken Howery (PayPal); Luke Nosek (PayPal); and Sean Parker (Napster; Plaxo; founding president Facebook; co-founder, Causes).
About Lightspeed Venture Partners
Lightspeed Venture Partners is a leading global venture capital firm that manages over $2 billion of capital commitments, and closed Lightspeed VIII, an $800 million fund, in early 2008. Over the past two decades, its investment professionals have backed more than 150 companies, many of which have gone on to become leaders in their respective industries. The team invests in the U.S. and internationally, with investment professionals and advisors located in Silicon Valley, China, India, and Israel.