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May 31, 2019updated 03 Jun 2019 6:30am

Thrive raises $110m to support cancer detection platform

Thrive Earlier Detection has been launched with $110m series A funding to advance and commercialise its liquid biopsy test CancerSEEK.

Thrive Earlier Detection has been launched with $110m series A funding to advance and commercialise its liquid biopsy test CancerSEEK.

The test was developed by cancer research experts at Johns Hopkins University, US, for the identification of multiple cancer types at early stages. It combines DNA analysis with protein measurements from blood to detect tumours.

In a retrospective study, CancerSEEK showed more than 99% specificity.

The company intends to add real-world data and machine learning to further improve the test over time and provide a comprehensive primary care solution.

Thrive Earlier Detection co-founder and chief innovation officer Christoph Lengauer said: “We envision a future where routine preventative care includes a blood test for cancer, just as patients are now routinely tested for early stages of heart disease. We know that if cancer is caught early enough, it can often be cured.”

Currently, the test is being studied in the prospective DETECT study involving 10,000 healthy individuals.

Being conducted in alliance with Geisinger, the study is designed to gain better insights into the test’s performance and the implementation of its findings into patient care.

The company is planning additional studies to collect evidence for supporting regulatory approvals, inclusion in cancer screening guidelines and extensive reimbursement.

CancerSEEK has obtained the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) breakthrough device designation to identify genetic mutations and proteins related to pancreatic and ovarian cancers.

“We know that if cancer is caught early enough, it can often be cured.”

Thrive Earlier Detection CEO Steven Kafka said: “With the help of experts and strategic partners, Thrive is launching today to advance a novel test for the earlier detection of multiple cancers, which we aim to augment with an integrated service that helps patients manoeuvre the often confusing path that follows a cancer diagnosis.”

The company’s series A funding round was led by Third Rock Ventures, and joined by Section 32, Casdin Capital, Biomatics Capital, Invus, Gamma 3, Exact Sciences, Cowin Venture, BlueCross BlueShield Venture Partners and Camden Partners among others.

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