Cartography launches from stealth with $57M to accelerate precision immunotherapy

Sara Choi | July 19, 2022
Cartography launches from stealth with $57M to accelerate precision immunotherapy

The potential of immunotherapy to co-opt your own cells to attack cancer is absolutely massive.

But, while drug advances have been made, with record numbers of biotechs focused on IO therapies today, these therapies are only as good as what they target—and most immunotherapies are pointed at the same small number of antigen targets discovered through piecemeal exploration. Without a more comprehensive approach to target discovery, the promise of immunotherapy will continue to fall short for millions of patients unserved today.

Cartography, which exists to address that very need, emerges from stealth mode today, and we’re incredibly proud to be “Day 0” partners with them as they announce a platform that will shape the next era of IO.

Cartography has developed the first-ever comprehensive atlas for immuno-oncology targets. Through high-dimensional expression analysis of cancerous and healthy tissue—in every cell and tissue type in the body—Cartography is purpose-built to find the most promising antigen targets, even across rare cell types missed with conventional techniques, specific to tumors but broad enough to work across cancer cells and patients.

At Wing, we invest at the intersection of bio and data. Cartography exemplifies the disruptive potential of generating novel data and applying computation to discover real biological insight; in this case, actionable targets that will be the basis for new targeted immunotherapies. It’s a phenomenally complicated, interdisciplinary challenge, but knowing the founders of Cartography pre-company, we were excited to invest at seed stage given their vision and team.

Back before Cartography was Cartography, there was Kevin Parker—future CEO, but back then an unflappable PhD student already with a body of work that probably had a few great companies in it.

Wing founding partner Gaurav Garg and I will go on record as saying Kevin’s concept defense was the biggest no brainer we’ve witnessed. I can recall as we met with Kevin and fellow co-founders (and physician/scientist/professors) Ansu Satpathy, MD, PhD, and Howard Chang, MD, PhD, a moment in Ansu’s office when he put down the dry erase pen after explaining the concept.

He paused, said, “I’m not crazy—this is a company, right?” and, with the small correction of, “big company” I was in.

It’s been a wonderful partnership ever since, and we’re thrilled here at Wing to celebrate Cartography’s $57M funding raise. We are more excited than ever to continue to support Kevin, Ansu, Howard, and their team in transforming targeted IO.

One of Cartography’s core strengths is being a lightning rod for exceptional talent, and we want to also recognize the founding scientific team—Max Mumbach, Caleb Lareau and Jeffrey Verboon—and the accomplished scientific advisory board—headed by CAR-T pioneer Carl June along with Joe Fraietta, Emma Lundberg and Angela Shen—as the beating heart of Cartography’s tech and culture.

Congrats, Cartography! And warm welcome to our friend David Moskowitz at 8VC as Series A lead along with the great investors at ARTIS Ventures, Catalio, Alexandria, AME, Gaingels, and the Cancer Research Institute.


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