SEngine Precision Medicine Announces Nobel Prize Winner and Former Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center President Dr. Leland Hartwell to Join Board of Directors

SEngine’s proprietary targeted oncology testing leverages cancer vulnerability discoveries pioneered by Dr. Hartwell and the biotech startup recently commanded $8M+ in ongoing financing efforts

SEATTLE, Oct. 29, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — SEngine Precision Medicine, a biotech startup delivering on the promise of precision oncology through functional genomics, today welcomed Dr. Leland (Lee) Hartwell to the SEngine Precision Medicine Board of Directors. Dr. Hartwell, along with two other colleagues, were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2001. Dr. Hartwell led the Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center as its President and Director from 1997 until 2010.

Dr. Hartwell remarked, “If I had cancer, SEngine is the approach I would want to take. We know the majority of SEngine tests show tumors respond to a drug that would likely not be predicted. SEngine’s propriety method screens for cancer sensitivity to hundreds of drugs and drug combinations–without exposing patients to toxic and potentially ineffective treatments.”

SEngine has the first and only lab in the United States to earn Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) certification for a high throughput, high complexity test for all solid tumors. Designed with the understanding that no two cancers are the same, SEngine’s technology allows for the testing of live organoids derived directly from patient tumors.

SEngine also announced a cumulative investment of $8.2M in the Seattle-based startup’s financing efforts, since launching in 2015, including a $3M investment this month. SEngine will use the funds to advance their proprietary portfolio of targeted cancer drugs aimed at novel cancer vulnerabilities for clinical testing.

Dr. Carla Grandori, SEngine Precision Medicine Founder and CEO remarked, “The addition of such an esteemed scientist pioneer to our Board is a turning point for SEngine. Coupled with the new investment, these milestones validate the SEngine approach of harnessing synthetic lethality and organoids to move cancer-fighting drugs to market faster and to the right patients. We are first to employ patient-derived organoids and exploit cancer vulnerabilities in a combined approach. I started with the hope of tackling cancer with less-toxic drugs tailored to each patient, now that hope has evolved into reality.”

Representing the lead investor group in the ongoing financing, Elliott Burkland added, “We are thrilled to partner with such a fantastic team and believe SEngine has a great opportunity to accelerate the promise of precision oncology and bring more targeted treatments to cancer patients.”

Burkland will also join SEngine’s Board of Directors.

ABOUT SENGINE PRECISION MEDICINE: Founded in 2015, SEngine Precision Medicine is a privately-held biotech startup based in Seattle, WA and founded to identify and develop the next generation of cancer targeted drugs. Discover more at and follow the latest news from SEngine on Twitter at @SEngineMedicine and on LinkedIn. Read more about Dr. Hartwell’s research into cancer vulnerabilities here.


CONTACT: Eric Schudiske
SEngine Precision Medicine