DZD Announces Completion of $8.6M Series A
Company’s System Uses Data and Machine Learning to Identify Bacterial Pathogens and Drug Resistance Profiles
BOSTON, January 23, 2019 — Day Zero Diagnostics, Inc. (DZD), an infectious disease diagnostic company using genome sequencing and machine learning to enable rapid and precise treatment in an era of growing antibiotic resistance, announced the completion of a $8.6M Series A round. The round was led by Triventures, a healthcare-focused venture capital fund that invests in transformational health startups, with significant participation from existing investors including Sands Capital Ventures and Golden Seeds.
Day Zero Diagnostics is developing a sequencing-based rapid diagnostic that identifies, within hours, both the species and the antibiotic resistance profile of a bacterial pathogen. Current approaches take days to provide similar information, a time delay that is associated with an 8% increase in death per hour for severe infections. DZD uses high throughput sequencing technologies and proprietary machine learning algorithms to rapidly predict pathogen species and drug resistance profiles.
“We are excited to partner with investors who share our vision about the potential of genome sequencing and machine learning for changing the field of infectious diseases,” said Jong Lee, CEO and a co-founder of Day Zero Diagnostics. “This funding allows us to continue our diagnostic system development effort and to expand our R&D program to additional use cases in infectious disease where speed and precision matter.”
Since its founding in 2016, Day Zero Diagnostics has been developing Blood2Bac™, a process for ultrahigh enrichment of bacterial DNA from complex clinical samples. DZD has also developed MicrohmDB® into one of the largest databases in the world that contains the whole genome sequences of pathogens along with their antibiotic resistance profiles. The dataset serves as a training resource for Keynome™, the company’s machine learning algorithm for predicting antibiotic resistance profiles from genomic sequences.
The company’s approach allows for the simultaneous testing of every known bacterial species and resistance marker, along with the ability to identify novel resistance determinants as they emerge. Using the diagnostic, hospitals should be able to dramatically reduce hospital length of stay, the overuse of expensive and often ineffective antibiotics, and, most importantly, excess mortality
As part of the financing, Peter Fitzgerald, MD PhD, a Managing Partner at Triventures will join the Board of Directors. “The team at Day Zero Diagnostics is one of the best we have seen, combining strategy driven leadership with world class technical talent,” said Fitzgerald. “As healthcare investors, we see the impact that antibiotic resistant organisms have throughout the healthcare system, and we are excited to invest in a company that has a clear vision for how digital technology and data can change the field.”
With the Series A funding, DZD will accelerate prototype development of its sample preparation technology and computational approach. In addition, funds will enable the introduction of DZD Lab Services, a suite of sequencing based diagnostic services to help clinicians address critical infection situations and transmission events.
About Day Zero Diagnostics
Day Zero Diagnostics was founded in 2016 by a team of clinicians and scientists from Harvard University and Massachusetts General Hospital. The company is based at the Pagliuca Harvard Life Lab, a co-working wet lab facility for high potential life sciences start-ups founded by Harvard students, alumni and faculty. DZD was recently awarded use of a private, state-of-the-art wet lab facility within the Life Lab, allowing for a significant expansion of its R&D program. The company has been recognized as a leading innovator by MedTech Innovator, TedMed Hive, Xconomy, HealthTech Arkansas, and MassChallenge HealthTech.
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