Category Archives: biotech

Neurobehavioral health company Blackthorn pulls in $76 million from GV to treat mental disorders

There are numerous challenges to finding effective treatments for mental disorders. However, Blackthorn Therapeutics, a neurobehavioral health company using machine learning to create personalized medicine for mental health, is betting its technological approach to finding drugs that work will put it ahead of the competition. Lucky for them, GV and other biotech investors have shown they agree by adding another $76 million in Series B financing to the coffers. Today, Blackthorn announced the close of its $76 million series B round from GV, Scripps Research, Johnson & […]

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Creative Destruction Lab’s second Super Session is an intense two-day startup testbed

Canadian startup program Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) escapes succinct description in some ways — it’s an accelerator, to be sure, and an incubator. Startups show up and present to a combined audience of investors, mentors, industry players (some of whom, like former astronaut Chris Hadfield, verge on celebrity status) — but it’s not a demo day, per se, and presentations happen in focused rooms with key, vertically aligned audience members who can provide much more than just funding to the startups that participate. North founder Stephen Lake […]

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Modern Fertility raises $15 million to sell its hormone tests — and gather more fertility data from its users

Modern Fertility is a San Francisco-based company that sells fertility tests directly to consumers, but increasingly, those customers will be educating the company, too. Indeed, the two-year-old startup now plans to develop a database of anonymized data about its largely younger demographic. A fresh $15 million in funding led by Forerunner Ventures should help. Forerunner founder Kirsten Green, who takes a board seat as part of the round, is known for countless savvy bets on a wide number of consumer brands that have taken off with users, […]

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What top VCs look for in women’s fertility startups

A number of promising women’s health tech companies have popped up in the last few years, from fertility apps to ovulation bracelets — even Apple has jumped into the subject with the addition of period tracking built into the latest edition of the watch. But there hasn’t been much in the way of innovation in women’s sexual health for decades. In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is now a 40-year-old invention and even the top pharmaceutical companies have spent a pittance on research and development. Subjects like polycystic ovarian syndrome, […]

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Sequoia-backed Whole Biome wants to heal your gut with medical-grade probiotics

Whole Biome has pulled in $35 million in Series B financing from a list of investing titans, including Sequoia, Khosla, True Ventures, the Mayo Foundation and AME Ventues — just to name a few. The goal? To heal what ails you using microscopic bugs. Medical science has caught on in the last few years about the importance of gut health using these bugs (also known as probiotics). Now startups are pitching in using venture money to come up with new and novel ideas. “We’re at a unique […]

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Groupon cofounder Eric Lefkofsky just raised another $200 million for his newest company, Tempus

When serial entrepreneur Eric Lefkofsky grows a company, he puts the pedal to the metal. When in 2011 his last company, the Chicago-based coupons site Groupon, raised $950 million from investors, it was the largest amount raised by a start-up, ever. It was just over three years old at the time, and it went public later that same year. Lefkofsky seems to be stealing a page from the same playbook for his newest company Tempus. The Chicago-based genomic testing and data analysis company was founded a little […]

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Our 9 favorite startups from Y Combinator W19 Demo Day 2

Heathcare kiosks, a home-cooked food marketplace, and a way for startups to earn interest on their funding topped our list of high-potential companies from Y Combinator’s Winter 2019 Demo Day 2. 88 startups launched on stage at the lauded accelerator, though some of the best skipped the stage as they’d already raised tons of money. Be sure to check out our write-ups of all 85 startups from day 1 plus our top picks, as well as the full set from day 2. But now, after asking investors […]

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Here’s a sneak peek at HBO’s Elizabeth Holmes documentary, The Inventor

The story of Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos has inspired quite a bit of content, including a NYT Best Seller, an ABC podcast, a movie starring Jennifer Lawrence and now an HBO documentary directed by “Going Clear” director, Alex Gibney. The documentary is called “The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley.” The tech world was shocked when the WSJ broke the news that Theranos, the biotech startup founded by Elizabeth Holmes, wasn’t what it appeared to be. Promising to revolutionize healthcare, Theranos wanted to accomplish the impossible […]

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VCs have growing appetite for ‘AgriFood’

Venture investors are pouring billions of dollars into feeding their hunger for food and agriculture startups. Whether that trend line is due to enthusiasm for the sector or just broader heavy investing in the VC space is much less clear. According to a recent report published by AgFunder – a VC and investing marketplace focused on the agriculture and food sectors – the “AgriFood” space is booming. Using data from Crunchbase and several other data partners, the organization published its “2018 AgriFood Tech Investing Report” this morning, […]

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Biotech AI startup Sight Diagnostics gets $27.8M to speed up blood tests

Sight Diagnostics, an Israeli medical devices startup that’s using AI technology to speed up blood testing, has closed a  $27.8 million Series C funding round. The company has built a desktop machine, called OLO, that analyzes cartridges manually loaded with drops of the patient’s blood — performing blood counts in situ. The new funding is led by VC firm Longliv Ventures, also based in Israel, and a member of the multinational conglomerate CK Hutchison Group. Sight Diagnostics said it was after strategic investment for the Series C — specifically […]

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