Aura Biosciences, a Cambridge, MA-based biotechnology company developing a new class of therapies to target and selectively destroy cancer cells using viral nanoparticle conjugates, closed a $30m Series C financing.
The round was led by new investors Lundbeckfonden Ventures and Arix Bioscience plc, with participation from existing investors Advent Life Sciences, Chiesi Ventures, Ysios Capital, Alexandria Venture Investments, Columbus Venture Partners, LI-COR Biosciences and several individual investors, including the estate of Henri Termeer. With the close of this financing, Casper Breum, Senior Partner at Lundbeckfonden Ventures, and Mark Chin, Investment Director at Arix Bioscience, will join Alan Walts, Ph.D., Joël Jean-Mairet, Ph.D., Dale Pfost, Ph.D., Arthur Pappas and Dr. de los Pinos as members of Aura’s Board of Directors.
Led by Elisabet de los Pinos, Ph.D., founder and CEO, Aura Biosciences is developing a new class of therapies to selectively target and destroy cancer cells. Its lead program, AU-011 in for the primary treatment of ocular melanoma, is being developed under a CRADA with the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health.
The company plans to use proceeds to expand infrastructure supporting ongoing clinical development for light-activated AU-011. Aura intends to continue enrolling patients who have early-stage ocular melanoma in its Phase 1b/2 study of AU-011.
Aura is also expanding in 2018 its footprint in Cambridge, Mass., with the addition of new employees, space and equipment.