Bengaluru-based deep-tech neuroscience startup, announced today that it has raised $750,000 in a seed round led by Stanford Angels and Entrepreneurs India with participation from Entrepreneur First, Info Edge Ventures, and IKP Knowledge Park. The Company plans to leverage the capital to further its mission to enable greater precision in diagnosis and treatment planning of neuro-oncological and neuropsychiatric disorders.
BrainSightAI won the BIRAC BIG 15 grant from the Government of India in January 2020 for conducting clinical studies to investigate alteration in brain function in Dementia. In June 2021, the Company was also selected as one of the 20 startups from 500 applicants to the MedTech Innovator APAC 2021 Accelerator program.
Co-Founders Dr. Rimjhim Agarwal and Laina Emmanuel first met in 2019 at Entrepreneur First - a global tech investment firm that mentors aspiring entrepreneurs to build on their idea, find a co-founder and build their dream start-ups. Within three months, BrainSightAI came into being that combines artificial intelligence (AI) and neuroscience to enable functional investigation through macroscopic brain-mapping for patients suffering from psychosis. As they started developing the core technology and initial product, early dialogue with prospective customers revealed the need for flexible and easy-to-use tools that integrate the macro-, meso-, and microscopic view of the brain for other disciplines too, such as neurosurgery and neurology. Their first cloud-based neuroscience workflow allows neurosurgeons and neuro-radiologists to map the eloquent cortex of the brain using just resting-state fMRI, a task which they find extremely difficult especially for non-cooperative patients.
Laina Emmanuel, Co-founder and CEO, BrainSightAI, said, “Neuro disorders, such as oncologic, trauma and psychiatric, are the third-leading contributors to the global disease burden. To be able to address these potentially life-threatening disorders better, the healthcare industry needs tools to predict outcomes earlier, discover new clinical and drug indications, and better understand drug and therapy responses. Such intuitive tools weren’t possible earlier. However, that is changing now. We are now at an inflection point, where with data, lots of computing power, and artificial intelligence, we can cloud-enable complex neuroscience-based workflows. Now, doctors and researchers can focus on asking questions and not on the mechanics of answering questions.”
“BrainSight is not just improving MRI imaging but, based on Dr. Rimjhim’s research at NIMHANs, leapfrogging the true potential of this modality to operate at the cutting edge of science, technology, and impact. BrainSight’s platform has the potential to change the global clinical paradigm for neurosurgery and neuropsychiatry, and we are excited to partner with Laina and Rimjhim on this journey”, commented Akshat Shah and Sandeep Singhal of Stanford Angels and Entrepreneurs India.
The angel network, comprised of Stanford University’s alumni in India, counts several high-profile members like Sandeep Singhal, Paula Mariwala, and Satyen Kothari, and has backed marquee startups such as ed-tech unicorn, Unacademy, space-tech start-up, Pixxel, and climate-tech start-up, Terra.do.
Esha Tiwary, General Manager at Entrepreneur First, India stated, “BrainsightAI could only have been possible through a combination of Dr. Rimjhim’s neuroscience expertise and Laina’s healthcare experience. When we first met Laina and Dr. Rimjhim, what caught our attention was their passion to use technology to impact millions of lives. Their unique platform is even more relevant today as the world grapples with these difficult times.”
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