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Natera Lands $54.6 Million to Tranform Pre-Natal Testing

Company will use funds to advance roll-out of low-risk genetic test.


The Burrill Report

“Natera is a prime example of our belief that personalized genetic informatics will transform medicine in the twenty-first century.”

Natera, which offers a non-invasive prenatal diagnostic for detecting common chromosomal abnormalities, has completed a $54.6 million Series E financing round to expand its global rollout of the test, called Panorama.

“Natera is a prime example of our belief that personalized genetic informatics will transform medicine in the twenty-first century,” says Ted Driscoll, partner and digital healthcare lead at Claremont Creek Ventures.

Panorama uses single nucleotide polymorphism-based sequencing of 19,500 DNA sites to detect anomalies in chromosomes known to contribute to disease, including trisomy 21, trisomy 18, trisomy 13, and XY chromosome number defects. A clinical study, published in the journal Prenatal Diagnosis and supported by the U.K.-based Fetal Medicine Foundation, demonstrated Panorama’s specificity and sensitivity of 100 percent for 242 patient samples across all chromosomal abnormalities analyzed, with no false positive or false negative results. The test also accurately ruled out sex chromosome trisomies.

In addition to high accuracy, the technology behind Natera’s test enables the detection of triploidies that affect one in 100 pregnancies at conception and “cannot be identified using other cell-free fetal DNA technologies,” says Matthew Rabinowitz, CEO of Natera.

Of the four companies with non-invasive prenatal diagnostic tests, Natera said its test is the only one to includes analysis of XY chromosome number changes, or aneuploidies. Panorama demonstrated a sensitivity of greater than 99 percent for detecting common chromosomal abnormalities and greater than 92 percent for detecting X chromosome anomalies in clinical studies. The test also gave no false positives.

The financing round included two new lead investors, OrbiMed Advisors and Harmony Partners, and undisclosed new investors. Existing investors Claremont Creek Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Founders Fund and Sequoia Capital participated in the financing as well.

May 03, 2013

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