Foundation Medicine: Top Innovative Company in Biomedicine

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Foundation Medicine is one of 10 biomedicine companies included in Technology Review’s 50 Most Innovative Companies (TR50) for 2012 [1].

Foundation Medicine

What is a TR50 company? It is a business whose innovations force other businesses to change their strategic course. TR50 companies are nominated by Technology Review’s editors who look for companies that, over the last year, have demonstrated original and valuable technology, are bringing that technology to market at a significant scale, and are clearly influencing their competitors.

Foundation Medicine was founded by world leaders in genome technology, cancer biology and medical oncology from several renowned institutions, including the Broad Institute, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The company plans to launch a clinical diagnostic test this year that uses the latest in genetic sequencing technology —  next generation sequencing — to identify personalized cancer therapies for patients. Specifically, Foundation Medicine plans to sequence approximately 200 genes, focusing  on genes and pathways that have been shown to have clinical application. The company views this as the “sweet spot” between conventional hot spot testing (common today) and whole genome/exome sequencing.

Foundation Medicine is backed by Third Rock Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Google Ventures, bringing the scientific and medical expertise of its founding advisors together with the company-building expertise of the leading venture capitalists in the life sciences, molecular diagnostics and emerging technology fields.

Foundation Medicine was chosen to be a TR50 company because its new diagnostics exploit a growing understanding of the molecular basis of cancer. The company is partnering with pharmaceutical companies and plans to use the comprehensive cancer diagnostic test in drug development.

Interested in other Top Innovative Companies in Biomedicine? Check them all out with the tag Top Innovative Companies in Healthcare.


  1. The 50 Most Innovative Companies in 2012. Technology Review. Accessed 2012 Apr 10.
About the Author

Walter Jessen, Ph.D. is a Data Scientist, Digital Biologist, and Knowledge Engineer. His primary focus is to build and support expert systems, including AI (artificial intelligence) and user-generated platforms, and to identify and develop methods to capture, organize, integrate, and make accessible company knowledge. His research interests include disease biology modeling and biomarker identification. He is also a Principal at Highlight Health Media, which publishes Highlight HEALTH, and lead writer at Highlight HEALTH.