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Originally published May 20, 2013 at 10:41 AM | Page modified May 21, 2013 at 10:38 AM

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Seattle’s NanoString seeks $86M in IPO

Seattle genomic-analysis company NanoString Technologies aims to sell up to $86 million in an initial public offering of stock, the company said Monday in a regulatory filing.

By Seattle Times business staff

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Seattle genomic-analysis company NanoString Technologies aims to sell up to $86 million in an initial public offering of stock, the company said Monday in a regulatory filing.

The company’s systems are used for research and, more recently, for diagnostic purposes. “We develop, manufacture and sell robust, intuitive products that unlock scientifically valuable and clinically actionable genomic information from minute amounts of tissue,” it said in its preliminary filing, which gave no estimated price or number of shares to be sold.

NanoString has more than 130 systems installed, and reported a net loss of $17.7 million last year on revenues of nearly $23 million.

In February, it began the commercial launch in Europe and Israel of the Prosigna Breast Cancer Assay, its first molecular diagnostic test, which the company says examines a collection of 50 genes to provide “an assessment of a patient’s risk of recurrence for breast cancer and the intrinsic subtype of the patient’s tumor.”

NanoString was founded in 2003, a “spinout” from the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle, according to Xconomy.com.

It has grown in the past couple of years, “selling an instrument that provides a digital readout of how genes are expressed in biological samples,” Xconomy said.

Its accumulated losses total $102.8 million.

The company says the IPO’s proceeds will be used in part to help commercialize its Prosignia system and to expand its other life-science research tools.

Yevgeniya Ioffe, a gynecologic oncology fellow at Washington University in St. Louis, used tests from NanoString to do her thesis.

“They’re on the cutting edge of genomics. Some of their tests can be utilized to assess micro-RNA expression,” she said. “We used them to look at micro-RNA expression in uterine-cancer cell lines to see if that provides clues about what happens at the molecular level to cause cancer and modulate the course of the malignancy.”

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