Calypso Biotech, an Amsterdam, the Netherlands-based developer of therapeutic antibodies for autoimmune diseases, closed a €20M Series A financing.
The round was co-led by Gilde Healthcare and Inkef Capital, joined by Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JJDC, Inc. (JJDC), and M Ventures. In conjunction with the funding, Arthur Franken from Gilde Healthcare will join Fiona MacLaughlin (Inkef Capital), Jeanne Bolger (JJDC) and Jasper Bos (M Ventures) on the Board of Directors.
The company intends to use funds to develop its anti-Interleukin-15 (IL-15) antibody CALY-002 up to First-in-Patient studies in several autoimmune indications.
Established in 2013 as a spin-off by the healthcare business of Merck founded by Alain Vicari, Yolande Chvatchko and M Ventures, Calypso Biotech BV is a biotechnology company focused on the research and development of novel biologics to address unmet medical need in immunological diseases, especially gastrointestinal indications.
IL-15 is an immune checkpoint cytokine that controls inflammation as well as multiple tissue-resident immune cells and recently attracted much attention in the immune-oncology space. Especially, it is being recognized as a key factor in the survival of tissue resident memory T cells, a population of immune cells involved in disease maintenance and recurrence.
Calypso Biotech has chosen to develop CALY-002 in Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EoE) as well as in other undisclosed auto-immune indications.
The company is also announcing major strengthening of its team. Bernard Coulie, current president and CEO of Pliant Therapeutics, will be appointed as independent Chairman of the Board. In addition, Prof. Bart Lambrecht, from the VIB-UGent Center for Inflammation Research (Belgium), a leading translational immunology expert, will join Calypso Biotech Scientific Advisory Board.
Calypso Biotech has also become Resident Company at Johnson & Johnson Innovation JLABS at Beerse in Belgium (JLABS@BE).