Mount Sinai spinoff lays off 250 employees; founder exits

Sema4, a genomics spinoff of New York City-based Mount Sinai Health System, has let go of 250 employees as part of an effort to save $50 million in 2022.

The job cuts affect 13 percent of the publicly traded company's workforce and bring the total staff reduction for the year to 30 percent.

Sema4 also said that its founder, Eric Schadt, had resigned effective Aug. 15, and that Matthew Davis, formerly of genetic testing company Invitae, is taking over as chief technology and product officer. In addition, the firm said it is leaving the somatic tumor-testing business and closing a clinical laboratory in Branford, Conn., at the end of the year.

"As we look forward, Sema4 will have a dramatically improved cost structure and a more targeted commercial effort supported by an optimized product development strategy," Sema4 CEO Katherine Stueland said in an Aug. 15 company news release. "This will enable us to continue to accelerate the use of genomics and leverage clinical data to enhance the standard of care through the more extensive use of precision medicine."

The company, which uses genomic data and artificial intelligence to predict patients' health trajectories, has collaborated with hospital systems including Sioux Falls, S.D.-based Avera Health, Altamonte Springs, Fla.-based AdventHealth and Evanston, Ill.-based NorthShore University HealthSystem since being spun out of Mount Sinai in 2017. Sema4 has about 1,600 employees after the cuts.

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