Elon Musk’s Neuralink lands $280M from Peter Thiel’s VC
Neuralink, a neurotechnology company founded by Elon Musk, raised $280 million in a Series D funding round.
The round was led by tech investor Peter Thiel’s venture capital firm Founders Fund.
Neuralink, founded in 2016, has developed an implantable chip designed to connect brain activity to a computer. After Neuralink won approval from the Food and Drug Administration in May to run human clinical trials, the company said it could start testing within six months. It has only run trials with animals, which drew scrutiny from U.S. lawmakers after 1,500 animals died under Neualink's care, according to a report from Reuters.
Treating the human brain has historically presented a challenge for researchers and clinicians. But digital health companies are increasingly using artificial intelligence, connected sensors and non-invasive and invasive devices to capture data on the brain and offer patient-specific treatments. Optimism persists that the emerging technology can ‘change the paradigm’ for neurologists.
Neuralink has raised $643 million, according to Crunchbase.
Optum Ventures leads investment of Endear Health
Endear Health, a digital patient engagement company, closed an $8 million funding round led by Optum Ventures.
Endear has developed a platform to help seniors manage their health insurance benefits. The company said the funds will be used to expand its team and continue development of its platform.
Health insurer company Blue Cross of Idaho and venture capital company 8VC also participated in the round.
Mental health startup for kids gets $13M
Daybreak Health, a mental health startup for school-aged kids, raised $13 million in a Series B funding round.
Daybreak works with school districts to provide telehealth therapy services to children in kindergarten through 12th grade. The company said it works with 60 school districts. It plans to use the funds to expand into new markets.
The round was led by venture capital firm Union Square Ventures. It also included venture capital firms Lux Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Maven Ventures and startup incubator Y Combinator. In August 2020, Y Combinator raised seed funding for Daybreak Health.
HealthEdge closes $160M fund
HealthEdge Investment Partners, a private equity firm, closed a $160 million fund.
It is HealthEdge’s fourth fund, the company said in a news release. Its portfolio includes medication adherence software company CSS Health and revenue cycle technology company Corridor.