Arizona Healthcare Financial Management Association (AZHFMA)

Phoenix biotech firm raises nearly $7M in venture capital

Phoenix-based Paradigm Diagnostics Inc. has raised nearly $7 million in venture capital.

The money will be used to continue to develop its genomic profiling test as well as expand its cancer registry.

Last fall, San Diego-based Mesa Verde Venture Partners led a $3.5 million round of financing that also included other strategic partners.

New York-based New Science Ventures LLC now is kicking in another $3 million.

Paradigm’s genomic profiling test is called Paradigm Cancer Diagnostic Test, or PCDx, which can provide comprehensive genomic test results within four to five business days, often on specimens with a very limited amount of tumor, said David Mallery, president and CEO of Paradigm.

“This financing will help us more broadly provide our solution to oncologists and patients,” he said. “New Science Ventures’ support also allows us to expand our cancer registry to build on the recent publication of our prospective clinical trial publication showing improved progression-free survival.”

The test is covered by most major insurers, which reimburse an average of $2,500 for each test, he said.

With 40 employees, the company will use some of its new funding to ramp up a national sales force, he said.

“We’re driving volume,” he said. “The goal is to break even by the end of this year.”

Founded in 2012 as a nonprofit spinout between Phoenix-based International Genomics Consortium and the University of Michigan Health Corp., Paradigm had a lab at University of Michigan until the end of 2015, coinciding with the end of funding from the Michigan health system.

University of Michigan Health Corp. had invested more than $20 million into Paradigm to help develop the test, Mallery said.

Last summer, Paradigm switched to for-profit status and now subleases space from IGC for its lab and commercial operations on the Phoenix Biomedical Campus in downtown Phoenix at Fifth and Van Buren streets.

As part of the new funding from New Science Ventures, Grace Colón, senior advisor at New Science Ventures, gets a seat on Paradigm’s board. She is president and CEO of several biotech firms and had been an engineer with Merck & Co. in France.

Mallery had met Colón around 16 years ago when she was at Affymetrix.

“They loaned her to IGC,” Mallery said. “She was one of our founding COO at IGC.”

And now that she is a senior advisor at New Science Ventures, she helped connect Mallery to additional venture capital.

“It’s a small world,” he said.

Angela Gonzales, Senior Reporter, Phoenix Business Journal.  Angela covers health, biotech and education.