Tempus Raises Additional $200 Million, Inks Collaboration with Bayer

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Verge Genomics has raised $32 million in Series A financing toward further development of new treatments by combining machine learning and neuroscience with experimental biology. [Source: kentoh/Getty Images]

Artificial intelligence-fueled precision medicine company Tempus announced yesterday that it has raised an additional $200 million, as well as an additional $250 million in convertible debt as it looks to spread its precision medicine model beyond cancer into other therapeutic indications.

Investors in the Series G-2 round included Baillie Gifford, Franklin Templeton, Google, Novo Holdings, and funds and accounts managed by T. Rowe Price. In the four years since its founding in 2016 by Groupon co-founder Eric Lefkofsky, the company has raised $1.05 billion.

“Never before has the need to bring the power and promise of technology to healthcare been more acute than it is today,” noted Lefkofsky, Tempus founder and CEO in a press release. “As a leader in this space, we are very much aware of our responsibility and the power of this moment in time; one in which we now possess the technological capability to use artificial intelligence to eradicate disease and help people live longer and healthier lives.”

According to the company, the new war chest will be deployed to help move the company beyond providing treatment guidance for cancer to now include other disease areas such as infectious diseases, cardiology and depression.

Until this year, Tempus worked primarily in the oncology space running a testing platform that analyzed DNA, RNA and proteomic makeup of patients’ tumors. It combined this information with structured and unstructured data from each patient’s medical record in order to make targeted, personalized treatment recommendations.

The company, which says it runs millions of molecular tests each year has also actively served as a resource for patients clinical trial matching and referral. Just last month it gained CE approval for its broad xT genomic panel that would allow boader testing of patients in the EU to enable clinical trial matching, and in September announced that it had added LabCorp’s drug development business Covance to its TIME Trial Network, which takes a data-driven approach to improve the efficiency of clinical trials recruitment, design, and launch.

With solid inroads made in the oncology space, the company has recently begun turning its sights to other disease areas where it can make an impact. In May of this year, the company began offering its own version of a PCR test for diagnosing COVID-19, and has also begun development of testing services targeting major depressive disorder.

In other news announced yesterday, Tempus said it has partnered with pharma giant Bayer to provide testing using its xT panel for patients patients with metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) with high Microsatellite Instability (MSI-H) status and patients with radioactive iodine refractory differentiated thyroid carcinoma (RAIR DTC).

Bayer will pay for the testing of eligible patients, in an effort to help identify the roughly 3% of patients with mCRC that have NTRK gene fusions resent with prior high microsatellite instability (MSI-H) status and the 2.4% to 12% of patients with RAIR thyroid.

Testing will be paid for by Bayer during the collaboration, which both companies say can help physicians make appropriate treatment decision for their patients when actionable molecular information about the patient’s cancer are uncovered.

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