GSK-Backed LifeMine Nets $175M and More Financing News


Investors are always on the lookout for promising new technologies. Read on to learn more about three Series B and C financing rounds in the areas of genetically encoded small molecules, artificial intelligence (AI) and immuno-oncology (IO). 

LifeMine Rakes in $175 Million in Series C 

Cambridge, Massachusetts-based LifeMine Therapeutics completed a Series C financing round worth $175 million. It was led by new investor Fidelity Management & Research Company. New investors Invus and 3W Partners Capital also participated. GlaxoSmithKline participated as a strategic partner. Also joining this round were existing investors GV, Arch Venture Partners, Blue Pool Capital and MRL Ventures Fund. 

The funds raised will be used to advance the company’s evolutionarily derived genomic drug discovery platform, Avatar-Rx. Avatar-Rx combines high-throughput microbiology, data science and AI, genome engineering and automation to search the fungal biosphere for novel genetically encoded small molecules (GEMs). The company also plans further integration of its chemoinformatic-assisted drug optimization and chemical synthesis abilities with biotransformation. 

“This financing will allow us to further scale our Avatar-Rx platform and advance our lead programs targeting some of the most elusive and high value genetically validated drivers of cancer,” said Gregory Verdine, co-founder, president and CEO of LifeMine. 

Israel’s Nucleai Raised $33 Million with Backing from Sanofi 

Precision oncology company Nucleai, based in Israel, raised $33 million in second-round financing. The Series B was led by Sanofi Ventures and Section 32, and joined by existing investors Debiopharm, Fosun RZ Capital, Vertex Ventures, and Grove Ventures. As part of the financing, Cris De Luca, global head of digital investment at Sanofi Ventures, and Andy Harrison, managing partner at Section 32, will join Nucleai’s board of directors. 

The company leverages AI and spatial biology to identify biomarkers that can help predict how patients will respond to cancer treatments. The financing will be used to further develop its technology platform. 

Avi Veidman, Nucleai’s chief executive officer, said that the company’s vision is to “bring spatial biology to the forefront of precision medicine and to embed the use of our platform in every clinical trial involving tissue over the next few years.” 

The Spotlight on Spotlight Therapeutics as It Raises $36.5 Million 

San Francisco-based Spotlight Therapeutics raised $36.5 million in a Series B financing. The round was co-led by new investors GordonMD Global Investments and EPIQ Capital Group. Magnetic Ventures participated, along with existing investors GV and Emerson Collective. Dr. Craig Gordon, founder, CEO and CIO of GordonMD Global Investments, joined Spotlight’s board of directors. 

Spotlight’s technology platform, Targeted Active Gene Editors (TAGE), is a class of highly engineered, modular programmable CRISPR effectors engineered to target and edit specific cell types in vivo

The company also announced it had promoted Mary Janatpour to CSO, appointed Peter Cameron as executive director of technology and appointed Cynthia Li as head of corporate and business development. 

“This Series B funding is a crucial milestone as we advance our lead first-in-class immuno-oncology (IO) program and progress our pipeline of programs in IO, ophthalmic diseases and hemoglobinopathies,” said Mary Haak-Frendscho, president and CEO of Spotlight. “It will enable us to execute our development plan, leveraging Spotlight’s unique cell-targeted in vivo delivery approach, as we aspire to unlock the full potential of gene editing and enable effective one-and-done medicines for patients.” 

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