While the research, results and trials often take centre-stage when it comes to drug discovery and development reporting, DDW’s Megan Thomas spotlights the funding and investments which make this possible.
1. US researcher awarded $3.6 million to study antibiotic resistance
Sanford Burnham Prebys professor Andrei Osterman, Ph.D., has been awarded a $3.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to expand current knowledge of antibiotic resistance, which will inform more precise antibiotic prescribing practices and help researchers develop drugs that are harder for bacteria to resist.
Osterman said: “We are moving away from a trial-and-error approach to medicine, toward something much more calibrated. The tools we’re developing with this funding will allow doctors to select precisely optimised doses and combinations of antibiotics to maximise their benefit while minimising resistance.”
2. Ori Biotech raises over $100 millionto launch CGT platform
Ori Biotech, a producer of cell and gene therapy (CGT) manufacturing technology, has secured over $100 million in an oversubscribed Series B funding round and will use the funds to further expand key personnel across all functions, in order to rapidly transition through pre-commercialisation to the launch of its CGT manufacturing platform.
“Our mission as a company is to enable widespread patient access to life saving cell and gene therapies. One of the biggest obstacles to achieving this is cell and gene therapy manufacturing processes that are too expensive, too highly variable and too low throughput. Our team is focused on the urgent need to enhance the ability of cell and gene therapy developers, CDMOs and Academic Medical Centers to deliver these therapies to as many patients as possible as quickly as possible,” said Jason Foster, CEO of Ori Biotech.
3. PreOmics closes €13.5m financing round to accelerate proteomics tools and consumables
PreOmics has raised €13.5 million in a Series B financing round provided by Bruker Corporation, which is expected to broaden the market opportunities for both PreOmics’ platform technologies and Bruker’s proteomics platform with more complete, automated workflow solutions for academic and clinical researchers, for biomarker discovery and diagnostics companies, as well as for CRO and biopharmaceutical companies.
Dr. Garwin Pichler, Co-Founder and Managing Director of PreOmics, commented: “We are excited to increase R&D, marketing and sales investments, and are pleased to have Bruker as a collaborator and major investor. Bruker shares our vision for advanced proteomic discovery processes for everyone, and a commitment to accelerate PreOmics’ growth. Our existing and future customers and partners will benefit from accelerated investments at PreOmics and from proteomics solution synergies to extend our product offerings and global presence.”
4. ENPICOM secures funding to scale up operations for its antibody discovery platform
ENPICOM, a bioinformatics software engineering company, has closed a capital investment round to support the expanding customer base for its SaaS proposition, the IGX Platform, to boost the candidate selection processes related to therapeutic antibody discovery.
“We are thrilled with this capital injection to further grow our business. It clearly illustrates the trust of our existing investor group, BOM Brabant Ventures, NextGen Ventures, and Arches Capital, in our team and proposition. With the addition of BOP Capital, we have a great new strategic investor on board.” said Jos Lunenberg, Chief Executive Officer at ENPICOM.
5. Life sciences management company receives £500,000 for development
NPIF Maven Equity Finance has invested £500,000 in Cryoniss, a UK-based storage and logistics management services business.
Sonia Houghton, Co-founder and CEO at Cryoniss, said: “Cryoniss is the latest in a series of life sciences businesses to secure backing from the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund. Operating out of Alderley Park – one of a number of hubs for scientific excellence in the North – this deal demonstrates how support provided by our fund managers can help to facilitate business growth in the region, create new job opportunities and catalyse innovation, in turn creating a more prosperous regional economy”
6. $27.5 million Series B investment made in cell manufacturing platform
Xcell Biosciences has announced $27.5 million in Series B financing led by Casdin Capital, a portion of which will be utilised to further advance the production of Xcellbio’s new cell manufacturing platform, which will deliver unique capabilities to support the development of therapeutic products with improved potency and persistence as well as reduced cell exhaustion.
“This new financing is an important validation of our successful track record and unique position in supporting immunotherapy researchers with innovative technology platforms focused on improving the performance of cell and gene therapies,” said Brian Feth, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer at Xcellbio. “With the backing of this world-class syndicate of life sciences investors, we are well positioned to support our growing customer base and continue scaling our efforts to deliver first-in-class platforms that enable the development of cell and gene therapies with the potency, persistence, and quality needed for optimal patient outcomes.”