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2018 Schmidt Science Fellow’s start-up raises $19 million from top Bay Area venture firms

BigHat Biosciences, a California-based start-up co-founded by 2018 Schmidt Science Fellow Dr. Peyton Greenside, has just announced the successful completion of an over-subscribed $19 million Series A funding round.

Peyton, Chief Scientific Officer at BigHat Biosciences, founded the company with Chief Executive, Dr. Mark DePristo, in 2019, following her Fellowship Placement at Stanford University. BigHat is a novel protein therapeutics company and developer of an AI-guided antibody design platform.

“There are very few biologic applications in which you can pose a hypothesis and have real, experimentally validated answers in days. Our platform and machine learning technologies allow us to do just that. – Dr. Peyton Greenside

The company integrates a wet lab for high-speed characterization with machine learning technologies to guide the search for better antibodies. This approach dramatically speeds up design and discovery data acquisition cycles to days rather than weeks or months. It also provides greater optionality, eliminating the need for premature candidate selection and enabling the simultaneous measurement of a vast array of key biophysical properties of many molecules.

BigHat co-founders Dr. Mark DePristo and Dr. Peyton Greenside.

The Series A funding round was led by Andreessen Horowitz, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm with over $16bn in assets under management. Andreessen Horowitz describes its mission as backing ‘bold entrepreneurs building the future through technology.’ The financing round included participation from BigHat’s prior investors, 8VC, AME Cloud Ventures and Innovation Endeavors, and builds on an earlier $5.3m funding round.

Commenting on the successful funding round, Peyton said: “There are very few biologic applications in which you can pose a hypothesis and have real, experimentally validated answers in days. Our platform and machine learning technologies allow us to do just that. We have only begun to explore the potential for novel antibody and protein therapeutics that the BigHat approach to discovery can deliver.”

BigHat has grown rapidly in the last year and has been achieving major scientific and corporate milestones. The fresh capital will enable the company to expand its scientific and technical teams, while advancing platform development and capacity scale-up.