i2O Therapeutics, a Boston, MA-based biotech company developing a platform for oral delivery of traditionally injectable biological drugs, raised $4m in seed funding.
The round was led by Sanofi Ventures and JDRF T1D Fund. In conjunction with the funding, Christopher Gagliardi, PhD, Director of Investments at Sanofi Ventures, and Katie Ellias, Managing Director of the JDRF T1D Fund, will join the i2O Board of Directors.
The company intends to use the funds to expand its team and ramp up research and development.
Founded by a team of researchers from Harvard University including Ravi Srinivasan, PhD, i2O Therapeutics is focused on the development of safe and effective oral formulations of therapies that are conventionally limited to injections, e.g. biologics, large molecules, and peptide-based pharmaceuticals such as insulin. The foundational technology has been exclusively licensed to i2O by Harvard’s Office of Technology Development. The platform enables drugs to pass through safely by utilizing a coating that dissolves in the small intestine, thereby releasing the active drug.
I2O’s initial focus is on developing a novel oral formulation for GLP-1 analogs. The technology was initially developed in the Harvard lab of Samir Mitragotri, PhD, who is Hiller Professor of Bioengineering and Hansjorg Wyss Professor of Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and a Core Faculty member at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering.