What you should know:
– Beacon biosignals, a neurotechnology company that applies artificial intelligence to the EEG (electroencephalography) to unlock precision medicine for any condition that affects the brain, has announced an excess of $ 27 million in Series A funding directed by general catalyst and with the participation of Casdin Capital. This capital brings the total funding of Beacon Biosignals so far to $ 30 million.
– Founded in 2019 by MD / PhDs and Harvard and MIT engineers, the Beacon launch was driven by the vision of a computer platform designed to scale the interrogation of large brainwave datasets with performance and capability unprecedented. Beacon Biosignals has one of the largest clinical EEG databases in the world and combines this data with proprietary machine learning algorithms to identify neurobiomarkers associated with patient subtypes, drug activity, and therapeutic efficacy.
Enhancing precision medicine for the brain
EEG is the standard of care in the clinical diagnosis and management of many neurological diseases and sleep disorders, but features of clinical importance are often buried in hours of EEG data. The wider adoption of EEG technology has been further limited by intensive workflows and variability in the interpretation of clinical experts. Beacon’s machine learning teams develop reliable, high-performance algorithms that can replicate the awarded consensus interpretation of multiple trained epileptologists, as well as new neurobiomarkers (e.g., quantitative epileptiform load) that exceed human capabilities for many hours or registration days. The Beacon platform provides an architectural foundation for robust, data-adapted neurobiomarker pipelines that bring new discoveries from development to deployment targeted at new clinical trials and therapeutic areas.
The Beacon platform is designed to adapt to any source of EEG data and maximize the scientific impact of the highest priority clinical trials of biopharmaceutical partners. In smaller phase 1 trials, the application of quantitative physiological biomarkers allows accurate characterization of dose-related therapeutic neuroactivity, provides mechanical knowledge, and identifies new primary or supplemental endpoints. By identifying variance between subgroups of patients, these capabilities further inform trial enrollment criteria or help identify target response populations. Neurobiomarkers can also be used to detect evolving diseases to identify patients candidates for early intervention.
The company plans to use Series A funding to scale Beacon’s computational biomarker discovery platform and address the massive unmet need for quantitative clinical trial endpoints, safety tools, and computational diagnostics for neurology, psychiatry, and sleep medicine. In addition, Beacon plans to seek new partnerships with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies and build on existing partnerships with Novartis, Praxis Precision Medicines.
“Our current progress has shown that EEG is an incredibly information-rich physiological outlet that reflects genetic substrate, cumulative exposures, and acute neurophysiological changes, beyond what is captured in MRI, fMRI, CSF analysis, or analysis. “We have already identified new electrophysiological signatures functionally linked to primary cognitive endpoints in Alzheimer’s disease. We are further encouraged by the applications of our platform to heterogeneous psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia and major depressive disorder,” he said. Jacob Donoghue MD, PhD, co-founder and CEO of Beacon. “Beacon is dedicated to helping our biopharmaceutical partners accelerate new therapies to reach patients with a significant unmet need. We are pleased to partner with General Catalyst and Casdin Capital to scale our platform to generate new knowledge about the patient stratification, PK / PD and efficacy endpoints “.