Israeli Startup Imagene AI Secures $21.5 Million for Precision Medicine for Cancer

Imagene AI announced it raised $21.5 million, comprising $3 million in seed funding led by Blumberg Capital and an $18.5 million Series A round led by renowned technology-driven cancer medicine investors Larry Ellison, Dr. David Agus, and AI imaging space pioneer Eyal Gura.

Using only a digitized biopsy image, Imagene’s AI diagnostic technology delivers real-time molecular analysis, setting a new standard by increasing the level of accuracy and reducing the time required for results, from several weeks to just two minutes. Imagene also drives a new approach for a wider scope of treatment response-prediction that encapsulates the uniqueness of each patient, bringing cancer care closer to reaching the full potential of precision medicine.

Imagene’s technology classifies patterns that cannot be seen by the human eye, evolving genomics, proteomics, and spatial insights to better understand the recurrence of specific cancers and their resistance mechanisms; this enables better stratification of patients in clinical trials and the discovery of novel targets for new drugs.

“Though cancer is a complex disease we might never fully understand, AI is bringing us closer to considering all relevant parameters that affect it, allowing a move towards theragnostics – a personal treatment strategy that combines therapeutics with diagnostics,” said Dr. Agus, one of the world’s leading physicians and the co-founder of several pioneering precision medicine companies. “Imagene’s technology can unlock precise and crucial information in real time, changing the way cancer is diagnosed and treated.”

Ellison, co-founder and chief technology officer of Oracle Corp., and Dr. Agus founded the Institute for Transformative Medicine in 2016 with the mission to spark innovation, leverage technology, and drive interdisciplinary, patient-centered research to continually reimagine and redefine cancer care, enhance health, and transform lives.

Blumberg Capital is an early-stage venture capital firm that partners with entrepreneurs to innovate and build technology companies.

“The ongoing digitization of healthcare will reward medical providers, payers and patients with new ways of leveraging data to improve diagnoses, treatments and outcomes by improving accuracy, streamlining processes and reducing costs,” said Yodfat Buchris, managing director, Blumberg Capital. “Our team is proud to be part of Imagene’s mission to leverage AI in the fight against cancer.”

“Imagene is honored to have the support of visionary investors – leaders at the forefront of technology-driven cancer research – who embrace our mission of revolutionizing cancer diagnosis and transforming patient care,” said Dean Bitan, Imagene co-founder and chief executive officer. “Precision medicine is transforming cancer care, yet, still relevant and available to less than 15 percent of cancer patients1. Our scalable technology strives to enable treatment opportunities for all cancer patients, driving precision medicine to be tailored per individual patient condition.”

Imagene collaborates with top-tier medical centers and pharmaceutical companies worldwide, making therapeutic decisions for cancer more accurate and accessible, profiling patients for clinical trials, and accelerating the drug development process.

The mentioned products are currently used for research purpose only and subject to regulatory clearances in the applicable markets.

  1. SCIENCE, Vol. 360, Issue 6387|27, Apr. 2018