3Scan, the computational pathology services platform, announced today that it has raised $14 million in Series B financing. The automated pathology approach pioneered by 3Scan reduces uncertainty in basic and applied research by shedding light on previously inaccessible and important dimensions of diseased tissue, utilizing high throughput robotic microscopes and computer vision. This new round of funding, led by existing investors Lux Capital and Data Collective, will be used to expand 3Scan’s position in the pre-clinical drug discovery market, as well as to continue to build out its image processing and image analysis software stack. Other participants in this financing round include the investment arm of one of the top U.S. research hospitals, prior backer Dolby Family Ventures, and new investors OS Fund, Comet Labs and Breakout Ventures.
“In the last 150 years, very little has changed in the tools available to pathologists and researchers who examine tissue,” said 3Scan’s CEO and co-Founder, Todd Huffman. “We are working on demonstrating the importance of comprehensive 3D spatial mapping of tissue samples. 3Scan has already secured service contracts with several large pharma companies in order to help them image and refine drug delivery to solid tumor cancers in mice (where drugs are often tested before entering clinical trials and being tested in humans). We are extremely excited to continue working with Lux Capital and DCVC to fulfill our shared vision of the future of pathology and are emboldened by the support of our excellent new and existing investors.”
“We at Lux are excited to double down with the 3Scan team,” said Josh Wolfe, Managing Director at Lux Capital and 3Scan board member. “They have exceeded our expectations, doubled in size, and attracted high caliber partnerships. The exquisitely engineered technology they have designed and delivered is quite literally trailblazing, on the cutting edge of computational pathology.”
“DCVC is fully committed to 3Scan because we believe they can simultaneously save lives and money, in both the multi-billion-dollar pharma and clinical care markets,” said Matthew Ocko, co-Managing Partner and co-Founder of Data Collective. “3Scan is delivering high-precision, cell-to-organ insight through a 3D pathology robotics platform with equivalent output to thousands of human histologists, all in a hardware footprint smaller than a Tesla. 3Scan’s technology will help unify pathology data with molecular biology insights to solve previously impossible translational medicine problems.” Ocko will join 3Scan’s Board of Directors as part of the financing. He added, “When we first invested in 3Scan, our conversations with top 20 research hospitals and pharma companies characterized it as a ‘must have’. Now those people are active 3Scan customers, and recommending the platform to their peers.”
“3Scan’s automated histology platform fills the gap between radiology and pathology by allowing large-volume high-throughput imaging of tissue and tissue scale diseases,” said Megan Klimen, 3Scan COO and co-Founder. “This type of imaging technology is essential if ever want to be able to use the power of modern computing to improve pathology outcomes.”
3Scan uses high precision robotics to make it not only feasible, but also economical to section entire blocks of tissue, including whole organs, eliminating the need for less accurate sampling procedures during the examination of diseased and healthy tissue. Today, customers send their tissue samples to 3Scan’s lab, where the tissue is stained to make the areas of interest visible, embedded in a resin or wax, and placed onto the company’s patented Knife Edge Scanning Microscopes (KESM) to generate thousands of sections, and corresponding images, from a single block of tissue. These thousands of sections, each of which is equivalent to a traditional slide, can be used individually, or stacked together to examine the tissue in 3D. Once imaging is complete, 3Scan uses their custom software to help customers scan through these sections looking for cells or other regions of interest and also analyzes the full 3D structure of the sample.
By digitizing tissue, 3Scan is able to use machine learning to give more accurate results during pre-clinical trials for drug discovery, and to help researchers answer basic anatomical questions that have been impossible to visualize with traditional methods. 3Scan is currently building out the throughput of its platform and refining its machine intelligence to deliver even more breakthrough services to its pharma customers.
Filed Under: Drug Discovery