Verge Genomics, the YC-backed company that looks to use algorithms to help cure neurodegenerative disorders, has announced the close of a $4 million seed round led by IA Ventures, with participation from Two Sigma Ventures, Draper Associates, Great Oaks VC, Slow Ventures, Karlin Venture, Elad Gil and David Lee.
Verge Genomics works by creating algorithms that make pharmaceutical creation far more efficient. Through the increase in genomic data, Verge can use its network algorithms to determine which already-FDA-approved drugs (with expired patents) affect various genes in the body. This is meant to replace the process of big pharma starting from scratch by blind testing drugs based on a single gene.
See, neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s, ALS and Parkinson’s involve whole networks of genes, rather than a single gene or mutation. By seeing all the various genes affected by a certain drug, which is already on the market, Verge Genomics hopes to save the industry billions of dollars and countless hours as they try to find cures for these diseases.
In just a few short months since launch, Verge Genomics technology has already uncovered a dozen drugs that could have implications for Alzheimer’s and ALS, which are currently in early testing phases, with plans to move to animal testing soon.