PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Inscopix, Inc., a Stanford startup developing a transformative brain mapping platform, today announced its $10 million Series A financing round led by Playground Ventures, with co-investment by AME Cloud Ventures and Floodgate Fund. With equity funding raised to-date totaling $11.5 million, the capital will fund investments in R&D toward further development of its brain mapping platform and will support the commercial scale-up of the platform for use by the scientific community to fuel breakthroughs in brain science that ultimately lead to new diagnostics and therapeutics for brain disease.
“We have spent the last few years laying a solid foundation for our business - developing and testing the core technology, and engaging with the scientific community, from the smallest university lab to the most advanced multi-user research organization,” commented Kunal Ghosh, CEO and co-founder of Inscopix. “During this time, we achieved significant milestones, from seeing the first breakthrough discoveries with our technology by our early adopter community, to recruiting top-notch talent that prepared us for the next phase of growth. This funding round will allow us to scale and to make our platform accessible to every researcher in the world who is interested in understanding the thinking, working brain - the brain in action.”
"Inscopix has built an incredible product ecosystem to-date, but we believe an even bigger opportunity exists to further develop core hardware and software infrastructure that drives forward the future for brain research," said Mark Valdez of Playground Global. "We are excited to lead this round of financing and to partner with the Inscopix team as they set out to achieve their ultimate vision."
Founded in 2011 by Kunal Ghosh, Mark Schnitzer and Abbas El Gamal, the company celebrated success with its Neuroscience Early Access Program (NEAP) - a three-year initiative that brought together 150 neuroscience research groups, including five Nobelists and 23 Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigators to trial its core brain imaging technology, nVista, and validate it as a tool for pioneering entirely new investigations of how mental functions and behavior emerge from activity in specific brain circuits. The program supported breakthrough findings which were reported in over 20 scientific publications.
“Understanding how the brain works is the defining scientific challenge of the 21st century. Neuroscience has made significant strides in understanding the anatomical brain, but until the launch of nVista, has lacked access to the game-changing technologies that provide deep insights into the active, functional brain at the level of neural circuits,” Ghosh explained.
Mapping brain activity in real-time is also considered to be crucial for designing effective diagnostics and therapeutics for a wide range of neurological and psychiatric disorders. According to a recent study by the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, brain diseases and mental illness cost the U.S. economy more than $1.5 trillion annually.
“The genomics revolution paved the way for startups and industry to innovate on next generation sequencing technologies that have together brought us today to the brink of personalized medicine”, added Ghosh. “Similarly, there is significant opportunity for entrepreneurs, government and industry to come together to innovate on next generation brain mapping technologies that improve treatment outcomes for brain disease.”
Inscopix is a private sector partner of the White House BRAIN Initiative, together with GE, Google and GlaxoSmithKline. The Company was also named World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer in 2015 and received recognition for its nVista technology by The Scientist in 2013 as a Top Innovation in Life Sciences.
Inscopix is developing a universal platform for real-time brain mapping. We bring true brain discovery within reach by giving scientists and researchers everything they need to study the brain at the speed of thought. Our platform fuels scientific breakthroughs and paves the way for new diagnostics, treatments and therapeutics for brain disease that will change the course of humanity.