IsoPlexis scores big backer for personalized protein 'barcodes' as Perceptive jumps on board new funding round
A little less than two years after bagging an extended $50 million Series C, IsoPlexis and its “proteomic barcodes” for personalized cancer care are back setting hooks to bring even more investors on board. And this time, they’ve caught a big fish.
Perceptive Advisors is leading a $135 million Series D round for the company, the firms announced Thursday, comprising $85 million in equity and a $50 million line of credit. IsoPlexis plans to use the proceeds to expand commercial and R&D staff, increase operational capacity and accelerate product development.
The Branford, CT-based company works with cancer centers and biopharma companies in the US, Europe and China, using its biomarker-driven system designed to predict responses to such treatments and personalize treatment for patients. IsoPlexis employs a proprietary single-cell analysis tool to refine its immunotherapies.
“We believe the future of advanced medicines will rely upon deeper access to in vivo biology for the development of new therapies and are excited to back the team at IsoPlexis,” Perceptive portfolio manager Sam Chawla said in a statement.
Researchers have developed what they call proteomic barcode chips, which allow them to look at the entire complement of proteins within a patient’s cells. It’s a process they say provides the mapping of new and accessible layers of biological data for every single cell, ultimately allowing for a better understanding of how individuals may respond to therapies.
Researchers utilize IsoPlexis’ systems for the analysis of functional proteins from single cells on certain chips, which CEO Sean Mackay says is barcoded with antibodies. After the chip is run on the IsoPlexis instrument, researchers place it into their system to see just how a person’s immune system would respond to different treatments.
“We call that the single-cell immune landscaping,” Mackay told Endpoints News. “What we’re able to do with that is find subsets of powerful immune cells that you typically miss in bulk profiling, sort of status quo, and that is a product that works on our instrument, basically a software-enabled system that reads out what the chips look like and what the proteins are per cell.”
That software then lets IsoPlexis compare what’s typically missed in that bulk profiling to long-term responder patients in several different fields like cancer immunotherapy, cell and gene therapy, Covid-19 and autoimmune disease, among other areas. IsoPlexis can then pick and choose the appropriate preclinical treatments and biomarkers in the clinic, packaging that info to pharma companies and academic labs.
Perceptive, historically a passive investor that enjoys clinical-stage investments and crossover rounds, has been fairly busy over the last year or so. It made its first foray into the company formation and Series A spaces in late 2019, setting up a $210 million early-stage VC fund with Xontogeny. Then last August, they launched their first in-house start-up in China, followed by a $310 million raise a few months later. Perceptive’s third SPAC also filed for an IPO in late July.
Other new investors included Ally Bridge Group and funds and accounts managed by BlackRock. Unnamed existing investors also participated in the round.