Vizgen Secures $37M Series B Financing to Advance Spatial Genomics Through Commercialization of MERSCOPE® Platform
Funding will accelerate company growth and infrastructure expansion leading up to full commercial launch
April 07, 2021 06:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Vizgen, the life science company dedicated to advancing human health by visualizing single-cell spatial genomics information, has closed a $37 million Series B financing. The financing was co-led by Novalis LifeSciences LLC, and current investor Northpond Ventures. Also participating in the round were new investors Tao Capital Partners, Pura Vida Investments, LLC, and a large U.S. endowment fund. Current investors joining the round included ARCH Venture Partners and David Walt, Ph.D., Professor at Harvard Medical School, Core Faculty at the Wyss Institute, and co-founder of Vizgen.
Joining Vizgen’s Board of Directors is Marijn Dekkers, Ph.D., Chairman and Founder of Novalis LifeSciences LLC, an investment and advisory firm for the life science industry. Dekkers brings over three decades of life science industry experience to support the Vizgen team, having previously served as CEO of Bayer AG and Thermo Fisher Scientific. In 2019, Dekkers was named Chairman of the Board of Ginkgo Bioworks.
Dr. Dekkers remarked, “I’m deeply invested in solidifying Vizgen’s status as the leader in spatial genomics tools and look forward to working alongside the management team and my fellow Board members to support Vizgen’s mission, uniquely contributing to a deeper understanding of biology.”
Last month, Vizgen announced plans for its new MERSCOPE® Platform to become commercially available in the summer of 2021. Proceeds from the funding round, which was oversubscribed, will allow the Vizgen team to continue to grow to support commercialization and increase its manufacturing capacity.
“We’re thrilled to continue supporting Vizgen’s rapid growth and vision for advancing human health,” said Andrea Jackson, Director at Northpond Ventures and Vizgen Board Director. “Vizgen is enabling researchers to profile gene expression with sub-cellular spatial resolution in ways otherwise not possible. We look forward to supporting the team expand MERSCOPE production.”
MERSCOPE is the first and only integrated platform solution for generating MERFISH measurements. The MERFISH technology was developed in the laboratory of Dr. Xiaowei Zhuang, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and David B. Arnold, Jr. Professor of Science at Harvard University. Dr. Zhuang and Dr. Jeffrey Moffitt, an Assistant Professor in the Program in Cellular and Molecular Medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital and the Department of Microbiology at Harvard Medical School, are both cofounders of Vizgen and have over a dozen peer-reviewed publications demonstrating the capabilities of this technology. In January of this year, Nature Methods recognized spatially resolved transcriptomics’ potential to advance science by providing spatial context to genomic data, naming it “Method of the Year: 2020” and highlighted MERFISH in its Technology Feature and in a published Comment, which provides in-depth descriptions of this class of imaging-based methods.
Terry Lo, President and CEO of Vizgen commented, “We are at an incredibly important inflection point in the evolution of genomics. The acceleration of data and new insights that can be generated through spatial information are truly profound. Funding from this Series B will enable us to bring the best tools for in situ single cell spatial genomics to the research community faster. We are grateful to have such supportive investors and founders to help realize this mission.”
Vizgen is developing the next generation of genomic profiling tools that enable researchers to gain new insight into the biological systems that underlie human health and disease with spatial context. The company’s MERSCOPE® platform enables massively multiplexed, genome-scale nucleic acid imaging with high accuracy and unrivaled detection efficiency at subcellular resolution. MERSCOPE provides transformative insight into a wide range of tissue-scale basic research and translational medicine in oncology, immunology, neuroscience, infectious disease, developmental biology, cell and gene therapy, and is an essential tool for accelerating drug discovery and development. For more information, go to www.vizgen.com and connect on social media @Twitter, @LinkedIn and Facebook.