Avalon leads $17M round for regenerative med biotech Ankasa

La Jolla, CA-based Avalon Ventures led a $17 million A round for Ankasa Regenerative Therapeutics, handing over an $8.5 million tranche to an upstart biotech working on new technology for reactivating stem cells and tissue regeneration. The lead project at Ankasa is the stem cell growth factor WNT3A for spinal fusion surgery patients. So far, the company has been working on animal models for bone repair. Germany's Heraeus Medical and Correlation Ventures of San Diego also backed the round. "We believe that our WNT3A therapy holds the promise of significantly enhancing the success rate of many bone repair and fusion surgeries," says CEO Sanford Madigan. "As the general population ages and the number of these surgeries rises, we feel our therapeutic approach can play a positive role for patient outcomes." Release