Illumina Inc, San Diego, recently selected three startups to receive awards during the second funding cycle of its Illumina Accelerator, a business accelerator focused on creating an innovation ecosystem for the genomics industry. Selected from a competitive pool of highly qualified applicants, the new startups from across the globe are spurring genomics innovation in healthcare, agriculture, and the winemaking industry.


Mostafa Ronaghi, PhD, Illumina.

We are delighted to invite such a promising group of cutting-edge startups to Illumina Accelerator, says Mostafa Ronaghi, PhD, Illumina senior vice president and chief technology officer Their ability to build innovative solutions to shape the future of genomics inspires us, and were thrilled to provide them with tools and resources to build a successful future. The selected startups for the spring 2015 funding cycle are:

  • PathoGn Inc, an infectious disease platform company based in California using genomics and machine learning to build pathogen diagnostics and disease forecasting products for agricultural applications.
  • Biome Makers Inc, a microbiome company founded by the Wine Guys, Castile and Leon, Spain, is introducing advanced genomics to the wine sector, in order to transform the quality standards of vinification.
  • Urology Diagnostics Inc, a genomics company from Oregon that is developing noninvasive urine sequencing diagnostics for screening and monitoring

Each startup will receive seed investment, a subscription to Illuminas NextBio translational genomics database, access to match funding through the $40 million Illumina Accelerator boost capital fund, and Illuminas sequencing systems and reagents. In addition, startups accepted into Illumina Accelerator will gain access to business guidance and fully operational lab space in the San Francisco Bay Area during the 6-month funding cycle.


Amanda Cashin, PhD, Illumina Accelerator.

We look forward to building upon the successes of our first graduates—Encoded Genomics, EpiBiome, and Xcell Biosciences—by helping our second group of startups also create significant value, generate terabases of sequencing data, and advance their genomics applications, says Amanda Cashin, PhD, who leads Illumina Accelerator.

Illumina Accelerator strives to catalyze genomics innovation in the broader startup community. It aims to advance genomics by lowering the barrier to entry and expediting the time to market for entrepreneurs and early-stage companies that are working on scientifically and commercially promising next-generation sequencing applications. Startups are invited to join Illumina Accelerator twice a year.

Applications for the Illumina Accelerator fall 2015 funding cycle are due by September 1, 2015. To apply, visit Illumina Accelerator.