Bengaluru based oncology startup, OncoStem Diagnostics, has recently raised $6 million from VC firm Sequoia Capital India Advisors, a senior executive of the company said.
OncoStem focuses on personalized cancer treatment planning through the development of tests that try to effectively predict the chance of cancer recurrence in patients. It was founded by Manjiri Bakre in 2011.
The startup earlier raised its first funding in 2011 from California-based VC firm Artiman Ventures which invested $3 million in the company in multiple tranches.
“There are no affordable tests in India to accurately predict the risk of cancer recurrence. We aim to develop innovative and cost-effective tests that will help predict and assess the risk of recurrence in cancer patients, thus providing doctors with an actionable blueprint for personalized treatments,” said Bakre.
Currently, the company is focusing on breast cancer recurrence detection.
OncoStem will utilize its funds for R&D and develop effective tests for oral, brain and colon cancer, and their automation.
The company plans to expand its presence in India and introduce tests in new markets like Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, South Korea and Singapore, said Bakre.
The company has its central laboratory in Bengaluru and is planning to set up another in Singapore.
“OncoStem is filling a critical need gap and helping spare thousands of cancer patients from severe chemotherapy, the associated toxic effects and the costs. Also, the biomarkers discovered through OncoStem’s predictive analysis of cancer recurrence will help pharma companies in developing new targeted drugs,” said Anjana Sasidharan, principal at Sequoia Capital India Advisors.
The venture capital firm has also invested in several hospital chains in India. These include ASG Eye Hospitals, Innovcare Lifesciences, Cloud Nine and Vasan Health Care.
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