Once-rival researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center have decided to join forces and dive into drug development, hauling in a massive $120 million Series A round to advance "smart" T cells that spur an immunologic attack on cancers.
Three big players in the life sciences industry--Celgene, Eli Lilly and GE Ventures--are chipping in to help fund a $100 million venture fund that will be used to launch up to 20 new biotech companies in New York City, adding some fuel to a small but growing fire of R&D efforts in the Big Apple.
Seattle-based Blaze Bioscience has rounded up $9 million in venture cash from a wide circle of angel investors willing to back the biotech's push into the clinic with its first "tumor paint" product.
As Visterra readies an influenza antibody for Phase I trials, the Gates-foundation-backed biotech announced today it's hired veterans of Mascoma and Concert Pharmaceuticals and licensed an antibody to treat the dengue virus out of the MIT lab of its co-founder, Dr. Ram Sasisekharan.
While the venture capital market remains sluggish, biotechs are signing ever-richer licensing deals with Big Pharma backers, and the average value of upfront payments jumped 37% across the industry last quarter, according to a report, paced by some lucrative deals in the earliest stages of development.
Three of the industry's leading discovery-stage venture groups have come up with a $43 million commitment to back a crew of marquee thinkers in the genomics field to launch Editas Medicine, a biotech exploratory vehicle that will set out to pioneer a new field of drug development.
The U.K.'s Pulmocide has pulled down a $27.5 million Series A from a big-name cast of investors, setting out to discover and develop some inhaled drugs for viral and fungal respiratory infections.
California's fledgling Allergen Research Corp. has hauled in $17 million to get its oral peanut allergy immunotherapy through mid-stage trials, setting out ambitious goals to apply its platform to some of the world's most vexing food allergies.
After two years of building up its knowledge of the human microbiome, tiny Seres Health has emerged from stealth mode today with $10.5 million in venture cash from Flagship Ventures and a business plan to develop new therapies dubbed "Ecobiotics."
Argos Therapeutics is working to get out from under the shadow of Dendreon and its disappointing Provenge, and now the North Carolina company has the cash it needs to get its kidney cancer candidate through Phase III and prove the promise of its dendritic cell platform.