Immune Design, a Seattle, WA-based biotechnology company focused on the development of novel immune-based therapies for cancer and other chronic conditions, closed an up to $49m Series C financing.
The round was led by The Column Group and new investor Topspin Partners, and included existing investors Alta Partners, Versant Ventures, Osage Partners and ProQuest Investments. In addition, Sanofi-Genzyme BioVentures joined the syndicate as a new investor. The financing includes an upfront investment of $32.5m, with the right of the syndicate to invest an additional $16.5m in the near term as programs progress.
Led by Carlos Paya, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer; Stephen Brady, Chief Business Officer; Richard T. Kenney, M.D., Chief Medical Officer; Jan Henrick ter Meulen, M.D., Chief Scientific Officer; and Frank J. Hsu, M.D., Vice President, Head of Oncology, Immune Design is a clinical-stage biotechnology company that develops two synergistic platforms of vaccines designed to treat cancer, infectious diseases, allergy, and autoimmune disorders. Its technologies include:
– DCVex™, a novel lentiviral vector platform engineered to deliver antigen-encoding nucleic acids directly to dendritic cells in vivo, and
– GLAAS™, a TLR4 agonist platform that activates dendritic cells by up-regulating key molecules for efficient antigen presentation and produces Th1 cytokines to enhance the immune response.
The company intends to use the funds to advance its cancer immunotherapy product pipeline, including proof-of-concept studies for its lead therapeutic candidates ID-LV305 and ID-G305. ID-LV305 is an investigational cancer therapeutic generated from DCVex™. ID-G305 is an investigational cancer therapeutic (which leveraging GLAAS™) designed to generate tumor Ag-specific Th1 CD4 T cells, with further expansion of CTLs while catalyzing humoral and innate immune responses.
Immune Design plans to initiate clinical trials of these product candidates as single agents, in combination with each other as a third product candidate (ID-CMB305), and in combination with potentially complementary cancer immunotherapy approaches.