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Yale spin-off Mira Dx gets $1M from Conn. state fund

Fri, 07/02/2010 - 5:32am
Mass High Tech: The Journal of New England Technology

Mira Dx Inc., a New Haven, Conn., startup that is making gene-based lab tests for disease susceptibility and response to various therapies, has taken in $1 million from Connecticut Innovations, as part of a $4 million Series A round.

Connecticut Innovations, the Nutmeg State’s quasi-public authority responsible for technology investing and innovation development, financed Mira Dx through its Eli Whitney Fund, according to CI officials.

Mira Dx is using discoveries licensed from Yale University in the field of microRNA (miRNA) to develop their tests, which will provide individualized information on the likelihood of disease occurrence and response to certain types of therapy. Its first test will be called the PreOvar test and will screen a woman for the KRAS-variant, a genetic marker associated with ovarian cancer risk.

Founded in February 2008 by Yale professor Frank J. Slack and associate professor Joanne B. Weidhaas, Mira Dx has added Bay State industry veteran Stephen Miller as president. Miller served for almost fifteen years as vice president of sales and marketing for Worcester’s Athena Diagnostics Inc. and started his career at Wyeth. Athena Diagnostics was acquired by Fisher Scientific International Inc. in 2006 for $283 million in cash.

In May, Connecticut Innovations pumped $802,500 into Wallingford, Conn.-based startup CyVek Inc. as a piece of the biotech’s planned $4 million Series B round.

 

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