CureMatch, a San Diego-based software startup that helps oncologists identify treatment options for patients, recently landed a big corporate partner.
French pharmaceutical giant Servier Group will help support and market CureMatch’s product through its connected health brand, WeHealth. France’s second-largest pharmaceutical company, Servier has a presence in 148 countries.
“Our area of expertise and development has been on the science side. As a small company, it is challenging to reach a broader market,” CureMatch CEO Bob Manning said. “Our partnership with Servier will allow us to have a global reach from a sales and marketing standpoint, and a large corporate infrastructure that we would never be able to grow organically on our own.”
CureMatch was founded by Dr. Razelle Kurzrock, chief of hematology and oncology for Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego Health, and Igor Tsigelny, a research professor at UC San Diego’s Department of Neurosciences, San Diego Supercomputer Center and Moores Cancer Center.
The company uses the genetic profile of a patient’s cancer tumor to rank the best drug or combination of drugs to treat that particular type of cancer. Its system ranks and scores more than 4.5 million treatment combinations, and shares that information with a patient’s oncologist.
“Each cancer is like a snowflake — complex and unique,” Kurzrock said in a news release. “Their genetic profile is unique, their tumors are unique, and their treatment should account for these differences.”
“Trying to understand which (treatment) might be the best for any given patient is an extremely difficult challenge. Most cancer patients are treated in the community, and don’t have access to a Moores Cancer Center or MD Anderson-type facility,” Manning said. “Our mission is to help as many cancer patients as possible. This really allows us to better fulfill that mission.”
CureMatch received seed funding in 2016 from local venture studio Analytics Ventures. A subsequent funding round brought the total amount of funds raised to $3 million.
Manning said the partnership with Servier would allow the company to access more patients, and build additional solutions using its technology.