Jasper Therapeutics, Inc., a Palo Alto, Calif.-based new biotechnology company, raised $35m in Series A financing.
The round was led by Abingworth LLP and Qiming Venture Partners USA with further investment from Surveyor Capital (a Citadel company) and participation from Alexandria Venture Investments, LLC.
Jasper Therapeutics is a biotechnology company focused on enabling safer conditioning and therapeutic agents that expand the application of curative hematopoietic stem cell transplants and gene therapies.
The company intends to use the funds to advance the clinical development of its lead product candidate, JSP191, which is designed to replace or reduce the toxicity of chemotherapy and radiation therapy as a conditioning regimen to prepare patients for hematopoietic cell transplant.
Jasper’s development of JSP191 is also supported by a collaboration with the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), which has been funding the program and is committed to providing a total of $23 million in grant support. As part of the Series A financing, Amgen, which discovered JSP191 (formerly AMG191), has licensed worldwide rights to Jasper that also include translational science and materials from Stanford University.
Jasper was co-founded by Judith Shizuru, M.D., Ph.D., a hematopoietic stem cell transplant expert at Stanford University, and Susan Prohaska, Ph.D., a Stanford University-trained immunologist, stem cell biologist and early-stage drug development professional. Dr Shizuru’s CIRM-funded lab advanced the understanding of the ability of anti-CD117 to impact hematopoietic stem cells and, together with the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford and University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) pediatric transplant teams, was the first to study an anti-CD117 antibody in the clinic as a conditioning agent.
That humanized antibody, now called JSP191, was first studied for conditioning for transplant in immune-deficient patients in collaboration with Amgen, UCSF and CIRM.
JSP191 is currently being evaluated in an ongoing Phase 1 clinical trial as a conditioning agent to enable stem cell transplantation in patients with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) who received a prior stem cell transplant that failed.
The founding management team of the company includes:
– William Lis, Executive Chairman and Interim Chief Executive Officer (CEO),
– Jeet Mahal, M.B.A., M.E., M.B., Chief Financial Officer and Chief Business Officer,
– Susan Prohaska, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Vice President of Operations & Program Management,
– Wendy Pang, M.D., Ph.D., Executive Director, Discovery Research, and Early Clinical Development,
– Robert Sikorski, M.D., Ph.D., Executive Consultant and Acting Chief Medical Officer.
Dr. Shizuru and Mr. Lis are joined on the Jasper Therapeutics’ Board of Directors by Kurt von Emster, Managing Partner of Abingworth LLP, and Anna French, Ph.D., Principal at Qiming Venture Partners USA. Dr. Prohaska is a Board observer.