Persephone Biosciences, Pioneers In Synthetic Biology, Lands $15M In Seed Funding

By Spencer Hulse Spencer Hulse has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team
Published on July 19, 2022

People tell you to trust your gut when making decisions, but it is not just good for making choices. Evidence suggests that the gut and microbes that reside there are big parts of many health issues, which is why Persephone Biosciences is putting so much effort into mapping multiple microbes to build a map of the gut biome. With the $15 million in funding, the company plans to push its research forward, which includes applying microbes therapeutically in cancer treatment. Learn more about the funding round below.

Persephone Biosciences Inc., a synthetic biology company reimagining patient and infant health through the development of microbiome-based medicines, today announced that it has closed a $15 million seed financing round. The round was co-led by First Bight Ventures and Propel Bio Partners, and included investments from Y Combinator, Fifty Years, Susa Ventures, American Cancer Society’s BrightEdge Fund, Pioneer Fund, and ZhenFund among others.

“This financing is a significant milestone for Persephone and the culmination of years of thoughtful engagement with forward-thinking investors and individuals who are committed to the vast potential of our platform and technology,” said Stephanie Culler, CEO and Co-founder of Persephone Biosciences. “We plan to deploy this capital to further expand our research and clinical programs across a range of therapeutic areas, as well as pursue new collaborations. With our ARGONAUT study ramping up, it is an exciting time for us. We are grateful for the support of all our stakeholders and their commitment and confidence in our vision.”

Persephone was founded to leverage a unique understanding of the microbiome as a therapeutic approach for a number of indications, including infant health and oncology. The company’s ARGONAUT trial (NCT04638751) is the largest study ever conducted in the U.S. to identify biomarkers for cancer treatment and prevention by mapping the gut-immune axis. In December 2021, Persephone announced that Janssen Biotech, one of Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson, would collaborate with the company on the colorectal cancer patient arm of ARGONAUT, and on an arm of additional healthy individuals with varying cancer risk. Then in April 2022, Persephone announced a collaboration with Ginkgo Bioworks to enable the synthetic biology tools needed to develop the next generation of microbial therapies.

About Persephone Biosciences

Persephone Biosciences is pioneering the use of synthetic biology for the development of microbial products that impact patient and infant health. Persephone is building an end-to-end platform to industrialize the development of engineered cells that restore health to damaged human ecosystems. The company was founded in the summer of 2017 by synthetic and metabolic engineering pioneers, Stephanie Culler, Ph.D., and Steve Van Dien, Ph.D. For more information, visit us at and follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn.

The original press release can be found on Business Wire.

By Spencer Hulse Spencer Hulse has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team

Spencer Hulse is the Editorial Director at Grit Daily. He is responsible for overseeing other editors and writers, day-to-day operations, and covering breaking news.

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