Foundation received an unsolicited email from Bill Gates a few months ago and the CEO wasted no time with responding.  It’s a test that allows the ability to see the footprint of the disease.  Over 700 oncologists have used the report.  Foundation provides the information that works for the doctors.  It is a molecular drug company and this helps doctors select the right therapy for each cancer patient. 

Personalized medicine will become the rule and not the exception and it evolves around sequencing and up until this test came along the information came from a test or a series of tests.  In additionimage the FoundationOne test includes genes that the oncologist might already be testing for.  After listening to the video and reading a bit on the website it makes sense as to why Bill Gates searched this one out as the company at the time was really not looking for investors actively.   Bill Gates also paid for one of the tests for a friend who was being treated with chemotherapy to see if a new profile would show up and there was enough in the profile to suggest some alternative treatments, so he was sold.  BD

From the website:

“FoundationOne™ is the first pan-cancer, fully informative genomic profile designed to help you identify potential treatment options for your patients based on a comprehensive assessment of the molecular changes driving the growth of their tumor. FoundationOne is optimized to fit current medical practice. It uses next-generation sequencing to interrogate hundreds of cancer related genes from routine tumor samples. Test results are provided in a simple report that aligns detected mutations with potentially relevant treatment options and clinical trials. Click here to download a technical guide, including the list of genes included in the comprehensive assay.”

So it was a particularly good day for Michael Pellini, CEO of Foundation Medicine Inc., when an unsolicited query from Bill Gates popped up in his inbox last September.

The co-founder of Microsoft Corp. MSFT 0.00% and global-health philanthropist had heard about Foundation's new cancer diagnostic test and wanted more information about the company. The email didn't mention any interest in investing in Foundation, and Dr. Pellini wasn't actually looking for money—the company was poised to announce it had closed on a new round of financing. But Dr. Pellini wasted no time in responding.

The two met for about 45 minutes the following week in Pebble Beach, Calif. The discussion led ultimately to this month's announcement from Cambridge, Mass.-based Foundation that Mr. Gates was among three investors who put up a total of $13.5 million, expanding the full amount the company raised in a Series B financing round to $56 million

Foundation's test analyzes tissue biopsies for alterations in some 280 genes that are suspected of driving growth and proliferation of tumors.  At the end of the conversation, Dr. Pellini recalls, Mr. Gates "leaned back in his chair and said, 'I get this. People will want it.'


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