Episona Inc., a Pasadena, Calif.-based epigenetics data company, raised approx. $4m in seed funding.
Backers included members of the Pasadena Angels (Simon Harrison, Ph.D., a member of the Pasadena Angels, is the lead investor) and other high-net worth individuals from Pasadena and San Francisco. The round included approximately $1.35 million in convertible notes.
The company intends to use the funds to increase sales and marketing and for further technology development. Seed is currently available in approximately two dozen fertility clinics in 12 states and Canada.
Founded in 2013 by CEO Alan Horsager, PhD, Episona is an epigenetics data company focused on improving reproductive health outcomes. Seed, the first product, is a test that evaluates epigenetic changes on DNA to predict the risk for male factor infertility and poor embryo quality. A physician-ordered test for use at home or in a fertility clinic, Seed evaluates the patient’s risk of male factor infertility and poor embryo development. Male factor risk can help identify the severity of a patient’s case, helping both the physician and patient understand whether to pursue less invasive procedures such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) or move directly to in vitro fertilization (IVF).
By analyzing sperm’s role in embryo development, Seed results can help identify problems that might occur with IVF and provide some answers if an IVF cycle fails or, in the case of seeking a donor, whether a male or female donor would be preferred.