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15 September, 2015 - 08:27 By Tony Quested

Desktop Genetics raises $2.15m to commercialise research software

Desktop Genetics CEO and founder Riley Doyle

UK angels and VCs have pumped $2.15 million into Cambridge-born Desktop Genetics (DTG).

The Investment will accelerate development of the startup’s DESKGEN genome editing software platform. The bioinformatics company aims to revolutionise the way genetic researchers work.

The cash comes from a syndicate of VCs and angel investors, including IQ Capital Partners, London Business Angels, the London Co-Investment Fund, Dr Jonathan Milner (deputy chairman and founder of Abcam), Dr Martin Murphy (CEO of Syncona Partners) and Dr Darrin Disley (CEO of Horizon Discovery).

DTG says its DESKGEN genome editing software platform allows researchers to expertly design and perform CRISPR-based genome editing experiments in virtually any cell line or species.

DTG will invest in the expansion of its existing sales infrastructure, expand marketing efforts to drive new user registrations and launch a custom sgRNA library design service for users engaged in functional genomics, target identification and validation.

CEO and founder Riley Doyle said DESKGEN makes CRISPR gene editing more predictable, accessible and efficient, arming scientists with all of the capabilities they need to scale their genomics research.

Users are walked through every step of the CRISPR gene editing process with a suite of lab-validated algorithms derived from leading peer-reviewed research and industry expertise.

In addition to enhancing researchers’ productivity and reducing the time and cost of gene editing with software tools, DTG also offers CRISPR library design, synthesis and screening services, and is partnering with specialist companies to create a high-throughput cell line engineering service in the cloud.

Doyle said: “To date, the DESKGEN platform has enabled over 4,000 gene editing experiments and assisted thousands of users in designing and accessing the best reagents for their research.

“We are grateful to our investors for making the next stage of development possible, and I am excited to lead the company through this phase of growth.”

Darrin Disley, chairman and investor in DTG added: “I am delighted to continue my working relationship with this talented team as they move into the growth phase of the business cycle.

“It is an exciting time to be in the healthcare sector as the convergence of biology and software promises to have a great impact on human healthcare via application of gene editing in areas such as gene therapy, cell therapy and the development of personalised medicines.”

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