San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) November 25, 2015
Jessica Richman and Zachary Apte, founders of leading microbial genomics company uBiome, were featured on AngelList early in their initial angel funding process. Now, they are paying it forward to other microbiome startups by launching an AngelList syndicate for individuals looking to make early stage investments in the microbiome space. In this, they join other successful entrepreneurs-turned-angels who have formed syndicates on the platform including Joshua Reeves, founder of ZenPayroll (now Gusto); Jared Friedman, founder of Scribd, and Othman Laraki and Elad Gil, founders of Color Genomics.
Noted investor Dave Morin will be joining the microbiome syndicate, saying, ”The microbiome is a fascinating area and there are many opportunities for companies in this space. The use of biological data to solve human problems is where computer science was in the 1990s. This market is poised for enormous growth.”
For more information about the Microbiome Ventures syndicate: https://angel.co/microbiome-fund/syndicate
AngelList, founded in 2010 by Naval Ravikant and Babak Nivi, began as an online introduction board for tech startups in need of seed funding. It connects startups to angel investors free of charge. Now, AngelList syndicates enable investors to invite other accredited investors to share in deals.
Naval Ravikant, founder of AngelList, welcomes the uBiome founders as AngelListʼs latest syndicate leaders stating, “Helping entrepreneurs turned angels use their expertise to fund new, world-changing startups is what AngelList is all about. We're excited about the launch of the Microbiome Fund and other syndicates in the world of biotech, tech, and health tech."
The microbiome is the rich community of bacteria carried both in and on the bodies of all human beings, playing a crucial part in health. Individuals play host to between three and six pounds of bacteria (for comparison, the human brain weighs around three pounds), with microbial cells outnumbering human cells by as much as ten to one. This bacteria affects health in many ways, both positively and negatively. For example it assists with the digestion of food, and helps to synthesize vitamins. Less benign bacteria, however, can contribute to numerous serious conditions.
Clinical understanding of the crucial role played by the microbiome in many health conditions is relatively recent. Identification of the individual types of bacteria in a personʼs microbiome has only recently become viable following a $173-million, five-year project by the NIH Human Microbiome Project (HMP). According to an article in Nature, experts predict a boom in microbiome-related partnerships and investments, with new microbiome-derived drugs and therapies coming to market within a few years.
Angels investing in Richman and Apteʼs Microbiome Fund syndicate will use the AngelList platform to pledge to invest a set amount, then can either choose to participate in all the syndicateʼs investments or to opt for involvement on an case-by-case basis. The Microbiome Fund syndicate is the only investment syndicate in the world to focus specifically on the microbiome.
“Researching and developing technologies based around the microbiome is some of the most promising work going on in health at the moment,” said Jessica Richman, CEO of uBiome. “Zac and I are excited about the businesses breaking new ground in the field, and we are looking forward to helping angels get involved in the most promising of these early stage enterprises.”
“Technology is helping microbiome startups make great strides,” says Zac Apte, co-founder of uBiome. “For instance, the cost of microbiome sequencing has come down from millions of dollars ten years ago to just $89 today, making it accessible to all. In addition to our own progress, weʼre seeing amazing work going on by others. Jessica and I want to help angel investors get the full benefit of our domain knowledge.”
Full information about joining Jessica Richman and Zachary Apteʼs AngelList Microbiome Ventures syndicate can be found here: https://angel.co/microbiome-fund/syndicate
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