GRAIL will use the proceeds for continued development and validation of its cancer test, designed to measure circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) in the blood by applying Illumina sequencing technology, according to the company, which disclosed the financing yesterday.
The cancer screening test will require large-scale clinical trials, including the previously announced Circulating Cell-free Genome Atlas study as well as other trials that are expected to sequence hundreds of thousands of patients, Illumina said.
Illumina’s stake will decrease to “slightly less than” 20% following the Series B financing—one of several actions by the sequencing giant to accelerate GRAIL’s independence.
Illumina said it will no longer have representation on GRAIL’s Board of Directors, will modify its supply and commercialization agreement with the cancer-screening company to a market-based agreement, and will reclassify its spending in GRAIL as a cost-method investment.
The $1 billion will be raised “primarily” from undisclosed private and strategic investors, with additional money to come from other investors that were also undisclosed.