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IsoPlexis, a firm that discovers a “new layer” of cell data, is aiming for $125 million in its first public offering

On Friday, IsoPlexis, a startup that develops tools to zoom in on the flurry of protein activity that surrounds a single cell, began trading. The IPO is expected to earn around $125 million, which will be utilised to expand the commercial team and progress the company’s aspirations to become more involved in the development of precision medicine.

IsoPlexis was formed in 2013 and falls under the category of firms that may be found in a medication development facility. Single-cell proteomics is the company’s main emphasis (basically the study of proteins and their interactions). Instruments and software have been created by the business to examine the proteins produced by cells, ranging from immune cells to cancer cells.

“Our device, which we created,” says CEO and co-founder Sean Mackay, “is able to identify subsets of cells in the body that we term superhero cells.” “And these superhero cells are characterised by a lot of activity coming from tiny groups of cells that current technology would typically overlook.”

According to Mackay, around 150 IsoPlexis devices were on the market in the first half of this year. Customers include 15 major pharmaceutical firms and roughly half of all comprehensive cancer centres in the United States, according to SEC filings.

IsoPlexis has already received significant investment from a number of well-known investors.

According to Crunchbase, the company had raised roughly $205.5 million in investment prior to the IPO. Perceptive Advisors, Ally Bridge Group, and BlackRock’s “funds and accounts” participated in the most recent Series D transaction, which raised roughly $135 million in total (about $85 million in stock securities and $50 million in debt financing).

Shares were initially priced about $15 per share, but have now fallen to around $12 as of this writing.

The IsoPlexis thesis includes the claim that they are the first to employ proteomics and single-cell biology to relate cell function to patient outcomes. Or, to put it another way, they were among the first to show that by looking at how individual cells and proteins interact, we might be able to predict how well a cancer patient will do.

IsoPlexis’ instruments have been utilised to this effect, according to published research, notably in cancer therapies.

IsoPlexis devices were utilised in a 2021 Nature Medicine study to assess immune cell activation in lymphoma patients. These individuals had malignancies that had become resistant to therapy or had reappeared after a period of remission.

In essence, it demonstrated that IsoPlexis’ technology might assist scientists in identifying the signals that indicate how well CAR-T cell treatment is functioning.

“What we’ve observed is that the unique cells we find are predictive of a patient’s long-term response,” Mackay adds. “We published research in numerous malignancies where we know that if patients have these sorts of special immune cells, these superhero cells that we detect, they will have this long-term result.”

IsoPlexis technique may seem similar to flow cytometry, a well-established method of counting cells, identifying them, and measuring certain cell properties, to individuals who are very interested in the minutia of cells.

IsoPlexis, on the other hand, claims to be able to provide a whole new layer of information, mostly protein-based information, that flow cytometry is unable to provide. The firm has obtained a patent that allows the gadgets to identify protein activity in each individual cell (now called IsoCode). According to a paper published in Nature Reviews Chemistry, barcoding is useful because it can analyse many different proteins at once, across thousands of cells, and cells can be recovered to be used in other experiments — but it can only capture a small portion of the proteome’s overall action so far.

Nonetheless, the firm has a long way to go before being profitable. According to SEC records, the firm has been losing money for several years. Though the firm made $7.5 million in sales in 2019 and $10.4 million in 2020, it lost $13.6 million and $23.3 million, respectively, in those years.

Moving ahead, putting additional equipment into the hands of more researchers will be critical.

Isoplexis has claimed to provide a new layer of data or information that will prove to be the game changer in the industry and also in the particular market.All my best wishes to them.

Shishir Gupta, Founder and CEO, StartupLanes

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