For more than 50 years, immunologists have used Listeria, a bacteria, as a research tool to study the mammalian immune system. Now Aduro BioTech, a OneMedForum presenting company is engineering Listeria to treat cancer and infectious diseases. Aduro BioTech, a clinical-stage immunotherapy company, announced that it has completed its Series B equity financing from a combination of current investors and Morningside Ventures, bringing the total capital secured in this round to $19.25 million.
The news of the recent financing comes just 3 months after the company presented their technology at OneMedForum in San Francisco earlier this year, a conference that attracts some of the most promising companies worldwide, and gives investors and strategic partners a glimpse into world changing drugs and devices in the health care and life science industry.
Aduro is developing a new-generation platform technology within the rapidly evolving field of cancer immunotherapy. While the lead application is pancreatic cancer, the platform, based on Listeria monocytogenes has been in development for nine years and has been validated by more than 20 major publications and has a broad range of potential applications.
“This new round of funding enables us to advance our lead cancer vaccine, CRS-207, into a Phase 2 clinical trial in pancreatic cancer,” said Stephen Isaacs, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Aduro. “In addition, these funds will support initial clinical development of CRS-207 for other indications and preclinical development of therapeutic vaccines for prostate cancer and melanoma as well as prophylactic vaccines for malaria and tularemia.”
Aduro previously reported results from a Phase 1 clinical trial of CRS-207 in 17 late-stage cancer patients with life expectancies of only 3-5 months. Six out of 17 patients survived for 15 months or longer after receiving their first vaccine dose. In November of last year, the company received the “Outstanding Scientific Achievement” award from the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA).
Morningside is a diversified investment group founded in 1986 by the Chan family of Hong Kong. It is engaged primarily in private equity and venture capital investments. The group has investments in North America, Europe, across Asia-Pacific, and since 1992, in Mainland China. Morningside is an active investor in early-stage life science companies formed around new technologies which represent a high degree of novelty over existing technologies.