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Nucleus Genomics lands new funding from Alexis Ohanian to help people assess specific disease risks – TechCrunch

Nucleus Genomics, a genetic testing company focused on calculating a patient’s risk for certain diseases, adds $14 million to its first round of seed funding. With this round, the company has raised a total of $17.5 million.

This “Seed Plus” round of funding was led by Alexis Ohanians 776. Ohanian joins investors such as Founders Fund, Adrian Aoun (CEO of Forward Health), Brent Saunders (former CEO of Allergan), Matteo Franceschetti (CEO of Eight Sleep) and others. Nucleus originally announced a $3.5 million seed round back in December 2021.

Typically, Nucleus users upload their own genetic results, previously obtained from an at-home testing company like 23andMe or Ancestry. Then, Nucleus will calculate polygenic risk scores, a measure that provides a genetic predisposition to a potential disease, and provide information about that risk on its platform. Customers also have the option of ordering their own genetic testing kit, which is provided by the company.

Polygenic risk scores were examined for their potential bias. In a study published in the National Library of Medicine, almost 80% of the participants in genetic studies (and the basis of the assessment) were of European descent and do not take into account demographic differences such as race.

“They are so European biased on genetics. So when we actually build models, we want to make sure the models work for everyone, not just the United States or anything out there,” said founder and CEO Kian Sadeghi.

Although Nucleus allows users to upload their genetic information obtained from third parties, Sadeghi says “there is no need for a formal partnership” with these companies.

So far, the company has been “focused on assessing risk,” but funds from this round will be used to expand the current team in a variety of areas. In addition, the company will build its own genetic testing infrastructure and purchase test kits in bulk.

Sadeghi added he wants (and will allow users) to have the most control over their data.

When a user signs up on the platform, they are asked how they would like their data shared, if at all, in addition to the option of whether users would like to make data available to research groups to “advance research and medicine”. the enterprise.

“Nucleus strongly believes in some kind of fundamental data ownership and control,” Sadeghi said. “We are built in our DNA, so to speak, for maximum data ownership and data control. You decide whether your data will be shared, and if so, with whom, when and how.”

However, the company has yet to go mainstream and it’s unclear what that will look like for users on the company’s platform.

The company suggested in an interview with TechCrunch that there would be an opportunity to expand into an international market, and for Sadeghi, he said that aligns with the vision he’s had since day one.

“When we say human genome and every smartphone, we’re not kidding,” Sadeghi said. “We truly see a world beyond the borders of the United States, where people can engage and interact and take control of their health.”

https://techcrunch.com/2022/07/15/nucleus-genomics-lands-new-funding-from-alexis-ohanian-to-help-people-assess-specific-disease-risks/ Nucleus Genomics lands new funding from Alexis Ohanian to help people assess specific disease risks – TechCrunch

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