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CASPR Biotech
Accelerating CRISPR diagnostics
Founded
2018
Employees*
11-50
Funding to Date*
$2.6M
Franco Goytia, CEO
Other CRISPR systems exist in nature—we mounted expeditions throughout South America and Antarctica searching hostile environments (such as deserts, high altitude regions, and environments with high salinity and high UV radiation) for organisms with novel CRISPR systems. Our company’s portfolio of enzymes includes unique functionalities which typically correlate with the enzymes’ original environments.
Many CRISPR systems operate at temperatures around 37°C. However, those temperatures are not compatible with isothermal amplification, which functions best at 62–64°C.

What do you do when all the Cas proteins get locked up in IP because of the CRISPR war? You go to the ends of the earth to find an undiscovered Cas protein. And that’s what the Caspr team did, traveling to high-altitude mountains and volcanoes to find extremophiles in Argentina where there might be a Cas protein whose upbringing might endow them with temperature resistance.

Caspr has been acquired by a Fortune 100 company.
Now Caspr is using their special Cas to develop cheap and rapid CRISPR-based test kits ƒor infectious diseases. One month after they graduated from IndieBio, COVID-19 hit and Caspr’s team knew exactly what they had to do. They flew out their scientists out of Argentina to come live in San Francisco, where 15 of them lived in a single house in Alamo Square, all trying to develop tests for the coronavirus.

After demonstrating how rapidly they were able to develop their tests, Caspr was approached by Amazon to help with their internal efforts to test their employees.

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