Harbour Antibodies BV Raises €2.5M ($3.3M) to Accelerate the Development of Monoclonal Antibody Therapies; Licenses H2L2 Mice to Pfizer

Names BJ Bormann as new CEO

Rotterdam and Cambridge, Massachusetts – July 24, 2013 -- Harbour Antibodies BV, the creator of transgenic mice to aid in the discovery of new human antibody-based therapies, has raised €2.5M ($3.3M) to continue R&D and commercialize its technologies.  The round was led by Atlas Venture. 

With the funding, pharma executive BJ Bormann, formerly SVP of Business Development and licensing at Boehringer Ingelheim and VP of Strategic Alliances at Pfizer, has been named CEO.  Atlas Venture's Peter Barrett will join the Board of Directors as Chairman.

"The Harbour team has developed technology that is nothing short of a major bio-technical engineering feat," said Peter Barrett, PhD, partner at Atlas Venture.  "Making these mice available to any research organization, public or private, will help accelerate the discovery of promising new human antibody biopharmaceuticals."

Harbour Antibodies' transgenic mice are used to generate human antibodies that enable biotech, pharma and academic research labs to accelerate new drug discovery while reducing overall cost.  H2L2 mice, which are for development of conventional human antibodies, and HCAb mice, which are for production of human heavy chain-only antibodies, are currently available for licensing. 

"Transgenic mice use the natural immune response and are a reliable way to generate human antibody-based biologics," said Professor Frank Grosveld, PhD, co-founder and CSO of Harbour Antibodies, and Chair of the Department of Cell Biology at Erasmus Medical Center, Rotterdam.  "There is a need for new transgenic mouse platforms to meet the continuing demand for human antibody therapies. The Harbour H2L2 mice meet the need for normal human antibodies, while the HCAb mice provide a new approach to generate next generation molecules including multi-specific human antibodies."

"Monoclonal antibodies have become the primary therapeutic modality for the treatment of a growing number of inflammatory diseases and are a critical component in advancing the treatment of cancer," said BJ Bormann, PhD, CEO of Harbour Antibodies.  "Until now, the capabilities provided by transgenic mice have been restricted to only a few large pharmaceutical companies.  We're excited to bring these capabilities to pharmaceutical, biotechnology and academic organizations discovering and developing potential antibody therapeutics."

About Harbour Antibodies BV

Harbour Antibodies is enabling the development of new therapeutic human monoclonal antibodies through the creation of two lines of transgenic mice.  The are the H2L2 mice, which generate full IgG and the HCAb mice, which generate heavy chain only human antibodies.  Both lines are currently available for licensing. For more information, please visit www.harbourantibodies.com

About Atlas Venture

Atlas Venture is a leading early-stage venture capital firm that invests in technology and life sciences companies. Since inception in 1980, we have helped build over 350 companies in more than 16 different countries. Atlas Venture is currently investing from its ninth fund. For more information, please visit www.atlasventure.com.

EMBARGOED UNTIL 7 a.m.  on Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Harbour Antibodies Licenses H2L2 Mice to Pfizer

Harbour Antibodies, the creator of transgenic mice to aid in the development of new human therapeutic antibodies, announced today that it has licensed its H2L2 mice, which can generate human monoclonal antibodies, to Pfizer Inc.

Harbour Antibodies' transgenic H2L2 mice enable biotechs, pharmaceutical companies and academic research labs to speed new drug development by generating human antibodies using traditional hybridoma technology.  Under the licensing agreement, Pfizer will have the option to use the mice in as many projects as they wish without disclosing the nature of the projects to Harbour.

This licensing deal marks the third partnership for Harbour Antibodies. Previous deals have been announced involving the H2L2 mice with Eli Lilly and Company and ChemPartner Co. 

About Harbour Antibodies.

Harbour Antibodies is enabling the development of new therapeutic human monoclonal antibodies through the creation of two lines of transgenic mice.  The are the H2L2 mice, which generate full IgG and the HCAb mice, which generate heavy chain only human antibodies.  Both lines are currently available for licensing. For more information, please visit www.harbourantibodies.com.

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