More and more healthcare providers are recognizing the critical role that genomics software plays in the advancement of precision medicine. Investors are getting behind genomics as well, as evidenced by the $8.5 million seed financing round that Nest Genomics closed on Tuesday.
Nest, founded last year, is based in New York and has offices in San Francisco and Tel Aviv. The startup’s founders, Moran Snir and her husband Guy, have built a genomics company before. Their previous company, called Clear Genetics, was acquired by Invitae in 2019.
“With the dramatic drop in sequencing cost and our increased understanding of the genome, genetics is becoming applicable to more and more patients,” said Moran Snir, who serves as Nest’s CEO. “But there is a last-mile problem with delivering genetic information to patients and integrating it into providers’ workflows.
For example, patients who have a family history of cancer must be educated about how this could impact their health, she pointed out. In order to achieve the best treatment outcomes, providers must offer these patients genetic testing and personalize their care based on the results.
That’s why Snir and her husband founded Nest. The company provides the software infrastructure needed for health systems, clinics, pharmaceutical companies and payers to launch and scale genomic programs. Nest’s platform has several electronic health record-integrated tools for providers, such as tools for patient triage, test ordering and clinical decision support for managing patients’ genetic results based on the latest clinical guidelines.
Patients also need easy and secure access to their genetic information, Snir declared. Nest’s platform includes several features for patients, including personalized educational content, results sharing and reminders for screening.
“We think of Nest as your home for genetic information.” Snir said. “Nest is a digital place to secure genetic results for life, so patients are empowered to access that data over time and use it with their providers to prevent or delay disease.”
Nest’s software has already been adopted by several large health systems, according to the company’s press release. Snir declined to name which health systems these were, but said Nest will announce them later this year.
Nest is certainly not the only company selling genomics software — there’s also companies like Helix and Seaport Diagnostics. In Snir’s view, Nest sets itself apart from the competition because its EHR–integrated platform can seamlessly integrate into a provider’s existing workflow. She also said Nest is unique because it combines clinical decision support with patient genetics engagement.
Although the current fundraising environment is more challenging than it was in the past couple of years, Snir said there is still plenty of interest in the genomics space and Nest didn’t have too much trouble securing its seed financing.
“My advice for other founders is to demonstrate a strong founder-market fit, make it clear that you are an expert in the field, and have a long-term vision,” she said. “Also, fundraising is distracting so try to make the process as short and efficient as possible so you can go back to building your company.”
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