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Startup Circular Genomics Raises $4.5M in Seed Funding

NEW YORK — Circular Genomics said on Tuesday that it has raised $4.5 million in seed funding to advance its molecular diagnostic test for depression.

The round was led by Cottonwood Technology Fund III, Tramway Venture Partners, and Mountain Group Partners.

Albuquerque-based Circular Genomics was founded earlier this year to commercialize a test for depression based on circular RNA biomarker technology from the University of New Mexico. With the seed money, the company aims to establish a laboratory, validate sample cohorts and algorithms underlying its technology, and develop the assay.

Circular said it is also planning to develop an Alzheimer's disease detection and prediction assay, as well as tests for post-traumatic stress disorder and bipolar disorder.

"This funding is a welcome validation of the promise of our cutting-edge translational research in circRNAs and brain disorders," Nikolaos Mellios, Circular Genomics' cofounder and chief scientist, said in a statement. "This will facilitate an important societal impact by introducing a novel biomarker that can be harnessed to fight the global depression epidemic."