Bloom Science, a San Diego, CA-based biotech company, closed a USD $12m Series A financing.
The round was led by Leaps by Bayer, the impact investment arm of Bayer AG, and the ALS Investment Fund. Additional investors include Apollo Health Ventures, as well as existing investor, Joyance Partners.
Led by Christopher Reyes, PhD, CEO and Founder, Bloom Science is developing innovative therapeutics for rare neurological diseases utilizing its novel drug discovery platform, IrisRx, that reverse translates clinical treatments to identify the compositional and functional microbiome building blocks. By focusing on the microbiome, the collection of trillions of bacteria that live in and on the human body, Bloom is pioneering microbiome-based therapies targeting the gut-immune-brain axis, an interconnected network comprised of microbes in the gastrointestinal tract, the host immune system, the central nervous system and the brain.
Its microbial drug candidates are rationally selected and engineered to target key underlying disease pathways disrupted by environmental, age-related and/or genetic factors. These therapeutics have the potential to provide patients with much needed therapeutic options for a broad spectrum of neurological and inflammatory diseases.
The company will use the financing to advance its pipeline including lead program BL-001 being developed for orphan, drug-resistant epilepsies. The drug candidate consists of proprietary microbes necessary and sufficient to reproduce the clinical efficacy observed with the ketogenic diet, targeting neuronal hyperexcitation and changes in brain levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), an amino acid that serves as the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter. The Series A proceeds will further enable Bloom Science to accelerate the development of its therapeutic candidate for the treatment of ALS.
The investment will enable Bloom to file an Investigational New Drug (IND) application for BL-001 in refractory epilepsy and advance into Phase I clinical trials, as well as further expand development of its platform and advance its research and talent acquisition.