ImmuneXcite, a biopharmaceutical company, has secured $3.58 million in second-round funding from new and existing investors. The funding round is in addition to the $2.42 million the company raised in 2011 in its first round of financing and an accelerator loan for about $1 million from the Massachusetts Life Science Center.
ImmuneXcite, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing the next generation of monoclonal antibodies for cancer employing a unique neutrophils based immunotherapy platform, today announced it has secured $3.58M in second-round financing from new and existing private investors. This is in addition to the $2.42M the company raised in 2011 in its first round of financing and an Accelerator Loan for about $1M from the Massachusetts Life Science Center.
According to Yaniv Bejerano, CEO and Co-Founder, the new investments will largely be devoted to helping move the company’s antibody-carbohydrate mAbXcite conjugates toward an IND (investigational New Drug) filing.
The mAbXcite technology targets cancer cells for destruction by engaging neutrophils, the most abundant and potent white blood cells. Neutrophils provide the body’s first line of defense against fungal and bacterial infections, but are not typically involved in cancer immunotherapy.
ImmuneXcite’s scientific founder discovered a fungal carbohydrate responsible for attracting neutrophils to fungal infections. By chemically conjugating this carbohydrate to cancer-targeting monoclonal antibodies, neutrophils traffic to the site of tumors and initiate tumor destruction.
“We are delighted to add a group of new investors to our existing committed group,” Mr. Bejerano said. “This funding represents an extremely important milestone for ImmuneXcite as we move our program toward IND.”
ImmuneXcite was founded based on research originating from the Whitehead Institute at MIT, where a unique carbohydrate was shown to activate neutrophils. Chemically linking the carbohydrate to monoclonal antibodies to improve their effector function is a bold concept that has been recognized and supported by the Massachusetts Technology Transfer Center, Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Department of Defense, Massachusetts Life Science Center, National Cancer Institute, and private investors.
ImmuneXcite is headquartered in Lexington, MA.