Cancer diagnostics tech developer Freenome cashed in an additional $290m from returning investor Roche, which will support it as it looks to expand its products to additional cancers.

US-based cancer detection technology developer Freenome raised $290m from pharmaceutical firm Roche, almost a month after it had announced a $300m series D round. The series D round was co-led by Perceptive Advisors and RA Capital Management and featured internet conglomerate Alphabet’s GV unit as well as corporates Kaiser Permanente, Novartis and Intermountain Healthcare, the last via Intermountain Ventures. Roche also participated in the series D round.

Launched in 2014, Freenome has developed a machine learning-equipped multiomics technology that enables cancer detection from routine blood draws through the decoding of cell-free biomarker patterns. Thus, cancers can be detected earlier when there is a greater chance of successfully treating the disease. Freenome’s initial product is a blood test for colorectal cancer screening, which is in the final stages of enrolment for a prospective registrational study. The company is also expanding its technology into other forms of cancer beginning with pancreatic cancer.

Freenome is part of the broader genetics and gene therapeutics space, which has caught the attention of corporate venture investors over the past decade, as our GCV Analytics chart below illustrates. The number of corporate-backed deals in the space increased multi-fold over the past decade and have remained relatively stable in recent years. This is likely because the space is relatively nascent and yet to gain more momentum on the VC arena.