Precede Biosciences Emerges from Stealth to Dramatically Impact Precision Medicine with a First-in-Class Liquid Biopsy Platform
Unique genome-wide platform profiles circulating chromatin and the DNA methylome to deliver resolution into the dynamic activation of individual genes and pathways in diseased tissues from just 1mL of plasma
Precede aims to accelerate the development and use of precision medicines by providing unprecedented resolution into disease-defining biology at scale
Precede has $57M in backing from renowned venture and private equity investors
Boston, MA – October 5, 2023 – Precede Biosciences emerges from stealth today with a breakthrough, comprehensive, blood-based approach to revealing disease-defining transcriptional biology – a first for the diagnostic field. Precede’s genome-wide platform simultaneously explores the dynamic, feature-rich space of gene promoters, gene enhancers, and the DNA methylome from a single milliliter (1mL) of plasma. Precede is actively partnering with drug developers to accelerate the development of precision medicines by identifying the biology associated with response and resistance to treatment and by identifying novel targets mechanistically linked to disease biology. In parallel, Precede is developing blood-based clinical tests to advance precision use of cancer medicines in clinical practice. Precede’s platform is available to drug developers and academic researchers as a Research Use Only (RUO) platform as of today. Since inception, Precede has secured $57M in backing from leading venture and private equity investors.
Genomic liquid biopsy (LBx) technologies have had a tremendous impact on cancer care over the last decade. These technologies have focused on somatic mutations and have both impacted treatment decisions for millions of patients and enabled the success of many targeted oncology drug development programs. However, these technologies are limited to cancer and cannot adequately guide treatment decisions based on transcriptionally regulated disease targets such as HER2 and ER in breast cancer or address emerging disease targets of interest for new modalities such as antibody drug conjugates (ADCs). Existing technologies are further limited by their inability to assess the dynamic impact of treatment on targets and pathways of interest. Unique among existing and emerging LBx platforms, Precede provides access to directly interpretable gene level and pathway level biology genome-wide and can be used to elucidate a patient's biological state at any given time from 1mL of plasma.
"Our platform is a true first for the field as it enables comprehensive profiling of dynamic disease-site biology at the gene and pathway level from a simple blood draw," said Rehan Verjee, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of Precede Biosciences. "Existing liquid biopsy technologies have impacted millions of patients with cancer over the last decade, and the precision medicine application space for Precede transcends that of even the most successful of these liquid biopsy technologies, creating a significant opportunity for us to impact the practice of medicine."
The advancement of Precede's first-in-class platform technology has required mastery of complex molecular biology and the development of sophisticated machine-learning approaches, a journey that started at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and has spanned multiple years. Precede’s platform has been extensively tested having now generated more than 7,000 genome-wide disease transcriptional profiles across cancers and numerous other diseases and conditions. First scientific data from the platform have been accepted for oral presentation at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress 2023 in October and will be presented by one of the company's scientific founders. These data have also been accepted for simultaneous publication in a major medical journal.
"Having worked with many emerging and established liquid biopsy companies, I'm excited about the potential of Precede's liquid biopsy platform to inform drug development in a way that no other platform has been able to do to date," said Carl Barrett, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer of Precede Biosciences. "Precede’s approach can enable intelligent and informed decisions in a great many contexts where we have just lacked important resolution into disease biology.”
Precede was co-founded through the 4:59 Initiative at 5AM Ventures and supported in the seed round by both 5AM Ventures and Binney Street Capital of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The company's Series A financing was co-led by 5AM Ventures and Lilly Asia Ventures, who were joined by Illumina Ventures, Bristol Myers Squibb, Osage University Partners, and Qatar Investment Authority (QIA).
"Precede has assembled a team of experts with a proven track record of success in liquid biopsy product development and the translational sciences," said Kush Parmar, MD, PhD, Managing Partner at 5AM Ventures, who seeded and incubated the company and co-led Precede's Series A financing. "The technology has advanced to a place where Precede can now deploy the platform at scale to inform drug development and, at the same time, accelerate the development of clinical tests that can be blood-based alternatives to invasive tissue-based standards."
Judith Li, MBA, Partner at Lilly Asia Ventures, who co-led the Series A, added, "Precede's ability to discover interpretable and clinically relevant biology from 1mL of plasma will broaden access to liquid biopsies across a wide range of applications in cancer and beyond.”
About Precede Bioscience's Liquid Biopsy Technology
Precision medicine refers to medicines targeting specific patient groups to deliver significantly improved outcomes. Development and clinical use of precision medicines have been hampered by challenges in accessing, analyzing, and integrating actionable biological and clinical data. The result, all too often, has been a "trial and error" approach to both developing medicines and to treating patients in practice.
Precede's genome-wide platform provides a unique window into the dynamic and complex activity of genes and pathways in diseased tissues from only 1mL of plasma. Using sophisticated and proprietary molecular biology and machine learning, Precede’s platform profiles circulating chromatin and the DNA methylome giving access to a dynamic and feature-rich space of ~20K gene promoters, ~1M gene enhancers, and ~50K CpG islands.
Precede's unique capability is relevant for drug development as it allows for the identification of biology (such as transcriptionally regulated targets) that is relevant to both response and resistance and for the identification of novel targets. The company's technology offers the opportunity for impact across cancers and many other conditions including auto-immunity. Precede’s platform is available to drug developers and academic researchers as a Research Use Only (RUO) platform. Precede is also using its platform to develop blood-based tests for precision use of cancer medicines in practice, medicines that are associated with the need for invasive tissue-based tests that are often poorly performed or not performed at all.
About Precede Biosciences
Precede Biosciences is breaking down the barriers to precision medicine by redefining what can be learned from a simple blood draw. By understanding the fundamental biology behind disease at any given moment, researchers and clinicians can better target medicines to the right patients in both drug development and clinical practice. Precede seeks to improve success rates in drug development and to be a part of building a future where every patient can receive a rapid, minimally invasive diagnosis and therapy that is precise to the biology of their disease. To learn more, visit www.precede.bio or follow on X/Twitter and LinkedIn.