NEW YORK – Cartography Biosciences launched on Tuesday with $57 million in Series A funding to develop precision immunotherapies.
The funding round was led by 8VC and included participation from existing investors Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and Wing VC. New investors included Catalio Capital Management, ARTIS Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments, AME Cloud Ventures, the Cancer Research Institute, and Gaingels.
The firm is developing immunotherapies using its antigen profiling platform that can predict efficacy and off-target effects for drugs binding to that target. The platform relies on single-cell genomics and proteomics sequencing techniques along with high-throughput binder discovery capabilities.
Cartography, based in Foster City, California, will use the funding to advance a pipeline of precision immunotherapies and use its platform to identify novel antigen targets across cancer types. The firm will try to set itself apart in the precision oncology space by classifying cancers by antigen expression, instead of by tumor type or the genetic mutations driving tumors.
Toward this end, Cartography said it has already profiled millions of cells in thousands of cancerous and healthy tissue samples using its platform. In doing so, the firm is hoping to extend the utility of cell therapies and next-generation antibody therapies.
"In order to bring the tremendous potential of immunotherapy to otherwise untreatable cancers, we first need to identify precise antigen targets for those cancers," Cartography CEO Kevin Parker said in a statement. "Cartography is building a platform and atlas to reveal the targets that will most directly benefit patients by analyzing cancers through the lens of antigen expression rather than histology or genetic mutations."
Parker, who did Ph.D. research on functional genomics, computational biology, and immunology at Stanford University, founded the company with Ansu Satpathy and Howard Chang, two physician scientists who lead genomics laboratories also at Stanford.