How EpiCypher is quantifying and scaling chromatin science

By Samantha Black, PhD, ScienceBoard editor in chief

September 2, 2021 -- EpiCypher is developing tools based on its designer nucleosome technology to enable epigenetics-focused drug development for a variety of chromatin biology applications. The company is one of 10 semifinalists in the BioTools Innovator accelerator contest. We spoke with Martis Cowles, chief business officer, as part of our exclusive coverage of the competition.

The company's technology can be used for a number of applications in chromatin biology, including the following actions:

  • Quantitative mapping of chromatin targets using CUT&RUN/CUT&Tag technology -- a replacement for chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-seq)
  • High-throughput epigenomic profiling of clinical samples
  • Biochemical characterization of epigenetic targets for drug discovery and inhibitor development

EpiCypher offers both products and services as part of its business model to push the limits of chromatin science.

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Cowles explained how studying chromatin is very complicated. Beyond decoding the genome, the regulation genetic code is very important and is often disrupted in many diseases. EpiCypher is focused on creating tools to help the greater scientific community answer questions about epigenetics and their impact on disease.

The first step in creating these tools begins with the ability to quantify chromatin changes -- a necessary endeavor for use in drug development and clinical research. The science-led organization is also focused on scaling epigenetic assays that can be leveraged for large-scale drug development and precision medicine applications.

According to Cowles, the next stage of growth for EpiCypher is to bring its high-value tools and services to other scientific and pharmaceutical companies to help them achieve their goals.

EpiCypher is just one of 10 semifinalists that have the chance to win $200,000 in cash prizes in the BioTools Innovator accelerator contest, with the list of semifinalists released in late July. All semifinalists are assigned a mentor and will complete a curated curriculum designed to help them secure additional funding and bring their companies to the next level. The field will be narrowed to four companies in early October. The four finalists will present at a live finale on October 14, where the audience will help decide the winner.

Stay tuned and follow along as we get a behind-the-scenes look at these companies as they race toward the finish!

Disclosure note: The BioTools Innovator accelerator contest is sponsored by Research Corporation Technologies and BroadOak Capital Partners, investors in's parent company, Science and Medicine Group.

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