ORI Healthcare Fund L.P. (ORI Fund) announces the completion of US$18 million investment into Pillar Biosciences Inc., a Boston-based start-up specialized in next generation sequencing (“NGS”)-based clinical oncology testing in order to bring affordable precision medicine to cancer patients globally.
Pillar Biosciences is prized with its patent-pending targeted sequencing technology platform and a proprietary data analysis toolkit, which achieve high sensitivity and specificity with clinical samples. The platform provides a fast, simple and affordable targeted sequencing method for NGS-based oncology testing. The start-up has also released its beta version of Lung & Colon Cancer Somatic Mutation Panel and BRCA1 & BRCA2 Germline Mutation Panel to cancer centers and clinical testing companies in US and China for validation studies.
The investment from ORI Fund will help the company continue its R&D efforts in tumor tissue genotyping area, i.e. integration of back-end information analytics capability, as well as adding liquid biopsy products for cancer therapeutic decision-making and treatment monitoring.
ORI Capital, the manager of ORI Fund, believes that NGS-based oncology testing is an integral component of precision cancer therapeutics and it helps to make steady advances in the molecular diagnosis of cancers. In particular, NGS makes it possible to detect cancer in early stages by directly measuring circulating tumor DNA.
The transaction is consistent with ORI Fund’s investment focus in the clinical oncology space. “We are excited to partner with Pillar Biosciences to further advance the modern cancer treatment, which is the main focus of our fund,” commented Ms. Simone Song, Senior Partner of ORI Fund. “We hope the partnership between us will help speed up the development of affordable precision treatments for cancer patients worldwide.”