54gene Investor, Adjuvant Capital, Raises $300 Million to Improve Global Public Health

Glenn Rockman and Jenny Yip, managing partners at Adjuvant Capital. (PRNewsfoto/Adjuvant Capital)

Adjuvant Capital, which led 54gene’s $15 million round in April last year for its Bioinformatics programs, today raised $300 million to improve global public health.

The fund will support promising new technologies for indications that the venture capital industry has largely ignored.

According to Glenn Rockman, managing partner at Adjuvant Capital, “As viruses like Ebola, Zika, and SARS-CoV-2 have clearly demonstrated, wealthy countries are vulnerable to these pathogens as well. Our new fund will finance cutting-edge research so we are better prepared for threats old and new alike, with the ultimate goal of saving or improving millions of lives by bringing urgently-needed drugs, vaccines, diagnostics, and medical devices to market.”

Adjuvant’s young portfolio include several companies poised to develop new solutions for rabies, yellow fever, group B streptococcus, non-hormonal contraception, chikungunya, herpes, respiratory syncytial virus, HIV, and COVID-19. Although based in the U.S., Adjuvant pursues the most promising technologies and talent globally, with investments in Nigeria, Bangladesh, and China, in addition to collaborations in India and Western Europe.

Adjuvant has already backed 14 companies developing technologies for high-impact indications ranging from rare conditions, such as melioidosis, to widespread global emergencies, such as COVID-19. Each Adjuvant investment includes binding commitments to make any successfully commercialized products broadly accessible to underserved populations in low- and middle-income countries.

Apart from Lagos-based 54gene, Adjuvant Capital has invested in New York-based Codagenix, which is using computational biology to “rationally design” vaccines for intractable public health challenges and California-based ChromaCode, which is leveraging machine-learning and artificial intelligence to significantly increase the throughput of existing molecular diagnostic equipment; as well as Beijing-based Yisheng Biopharma, which is addressing chronic supply issues in the rabies vaccine market.

“Accelerating the widespread availability of emerging public health innovations is a smart business decision that has the potential to benefit millions of people, especially women and girls, in low-income countries,” said Jenny Yip, managing partner at Adjuvant Capital. “We firmly believe that our investment model represents an innovative way to benefit both our investors and society at large.”