Illumina, Inc. have announced Illumina Accelerator--the world's first business accelerator focused solely on creating an innovation ecosystem for the genomics industry--has selected three new startups for its second funding cycle. Selected from a competitive pool of highly qualified applicants, the new startups from across the globe are spurring genomics innovation in healthcare, agriculture, and the winemaking industry.
"We are delighted to invite such a promising group of cutting-edge startups to Illumina Accelerator," said Illumina Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Mostafa Ronaghi, Ph.D. "Their ability to build innovative solutions to shape the future of genomics inspires us, and we're thrilled to provide them with tools and resources to build a successful future."
The selected startups for the spring 2015 funding cycle are:
•PathoGn, Inc. is an infectious disease platform company based in California using genomics and machine learning to build pathogen diagnostics and disease forecasting products for agricultural applications.
•Biome Makers Inc. is a microbiome company founded by The Wine Guys, from Castile and Leon, Spain, introducing advanced genomics in the wine sector to transform the quality standards of vinification.
•Urology Diagnostics Incorporated is a genomics company from Oregon developing noninvasive urine sequencing diagnostics for screening and monitoring cancer.
Each startup will receive seed investment, a subscription to Illumina's NextBio translational genomics database, access to match funding through the $40 million Illumina Accelerator Boost Capital, and Illumina's sequencing systems and reagents. In addition, startups accepted into Illumina Accelerator will gain access to business guidance and fully operational lab space in the San Francisco Bay Area during the six-month funding cycle.
"We look forward to building upon the successes of our first graduates--Encoded Genomics, Inc., EpiBiome, Inc., and Xcell Biosciences, Inc.--by helping our second group of startups also create significant value, generate terabases of sequencing data, and advance their genomics applications," said Amanda Cashin, Ph.D., who leads Illumina Accelerator.
Illumina Accelerator strives to catalyze genomics innovation in the broader startup community. It aims to advance genomics by lowering the barrier to entry and expedite the time to market for entrepreneurs and early-stage companies that are working on scientifically and commercially promising next-generation sequencing applications. Startups are invited to join Illumina Accelerator twice a year.