Health

StartUp Health report hints at a burgeoning interest in genetics

StartUp Health released its latest funding report for November, which shows a rise in investment in genetics and wearable computing.

StartUp Health offers a three-year long training and mentorship program for digital health startups. To stay on top of the industry trends, the organizers have built out a small team of analysts to investigate how investment in health care is changing over time. The latest report, which was compiled by a small team of fellows and financial analysts, found that genetics and wearables captured upwards of 50 percent of the funding in November.

Screen Shot 2013-12-18 at 9.49.47 AMWhat stands out is the interest in genetics, a rapidly emerging field. According to StartUp Health, a $37 million investment in GenapSys from high-profile figures like Yuri Milner, inspired many investors to look into the space. GenapSys, which describes itself as a next generation gene sequencing platform, raised more money than any other digital health company in November.

The growing interest in the space may also be down to the media firestorm that erupted when regulators cracked down on genome testing startup 23andMe. At the end of the month, the Food and Drug Administration requested that 23andMe cease marketing and selling its home testing kit. The case garnered a great deal of attention for 23andMe, and genetics in general.

According to the authors of the report, technologies to improve “genetic sequencing and interpretation” are will be strong bets for investors who are interested in the “future of individualized medicine.”

Wearable computing also continued to dominate last month, with medical device makers Scanadu and CardioInsight raising $10.5 million and $15 million respectively.

We’ll be interested to see how these findings measure up to Rock Health’s in-depth quarterly report, the go-to source for digital health entrepreneurs and investors.


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