News Ticker

Biotech Firm Raises $17 Million in Financing Round

Adarza BioSystems Inc., a Henrietta-based company, has raised $17 million in its Series C financing round, officials said Friday.

 3×5 RiverVest Fund II L.P. is the lead investor for the round. It is co-managed by a joint venture between Portland, Ore.-based 3×5 Partners LLC and an affiliate of St. Louis-based RiverVest Venture Partners LLC, officials said.
RiverVest Venture Partners managing directors John McKearn and Jay Schmelter are to join the board of Adarza.
“Adarza’s AIR technology can deliver a powerful tool to researchers and clinicians,” McKearn said in a statement. “We are proud to support the Adarza team on the path to commercialization.”
Adarza develops and manufactures immunoassay technology, in the form of microchips, that can identify proteins and genetic markers in medical samples such as blood, officials said. 
The funding will help the firm expand production capacity in St. Peters, Mo., where its manufacturing facility is based. The financing also will help to commercialize the firm’s first immunoassay product consumable and instrument platform, the company said.
The technology helps to improve cancer diagnostics and allergy testing, drug and vaccine development, immunology and infectious diseases research, officials said.
“I am very excited about joining Adarza at this stage of the company’s development,” said Bryan Witherbee, the new president of Adarza, in a statement. “I am looking forward to moving Adarza’s… technology through to commercialization and introducing truly transformative label-free, multiplex products.”  
Witherbee has taken over the helm of the firm from CEO Rand Henke who is retiring. Henke, a company founder, was instrumental in organizing Adarza while serving as an entrepreneur in residence at High Tech Rochester Inc. He successfully secured a license for Adarza’s core technology from the University of Rochester Medical Center, and played the lead role in Adarza’s business development, the company said. Adarza was founded in Rochester in 2008.
 “The investment commitment by 3×5 RiverVest Fund II, and having Bryan Witherbee join Adarza as president, offers Adarza significant financial resources, leadership and industry experience,” Henke said. “This represents an exciting phase in Adarza’s development that will take the company through final stages of commercialization and product release.”