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Lupus Diagnostics Firm Progentec Acquires LupusCorner, Raises $1.25M

NEW YORK (360Dx) – Progentec Diagnostics said today that it has raised $1.25 million in a second round of funding that will support development of its tool for identifying lupus flare ups and its biomarker-based disease-activity index.

The firm also said that it has acquired LupusCorner, a health management platform for people with systemic lupus erythematosus and lupus nephritis. Integrating LupusCorner’s technology platform and data insights positions Progentec to develop a "first-in-class lupus-management platform," the diagnostics firm said.

Financial and other terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Oklahoma City-based Progentec said that i2E led the funding round along with OCA Ventures and NMC Lifesciences.

Its assays include biomarker tests to diagnose disease before symptoms begin to show, and tests to monitor and predict disease activity levels in lupus. Its platform uses technology developed by the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, the firm said.

Progentec CEO Mohan Purushothaman said in a statement that the funding round "is the next step on our journey to making this and other advanced tools commercially available to patients with lupus, a disease that afflicts more than 1 million Americans, many of whom are women."

The Lupus Foundation of America estimates that there are 1.5 million systemic lupus erythematosus patients in the US alone.

Each month, nearly 45,000 people with lupus interact with the LupusCorner platform, Progentec said. It connects people battling lupus in an online patient community to share information and better manage the disease. "The addition of LupusCorner and its users furthers our vision of creating a comprehensive disease-management platform and ensures that the patient voice will be a valued part of our process," Purushothaman said.

The founders of LupusCorner, Arif Sorathia and Brett Adelman, have joined Progentec and will help lead technology, outreach, and growth initiatives.

i2E, which focuses on early-stage technology companies in Oklahoma, earlier led a $1.25 million first round of investment in the firm that also included funding from OCA Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm, in addition to Mayo Clinic Ventures.