ImmunoScape grants $14M over night for tech platform targeting cancer

Biotech startup ImmunoScape said Tuesday it has raised $14 million in venture capital funding to further discover new cancer-specific T-cell receptors that could better target tumor treatments.

The company has dual research centers in San Diego and Singapore. The new funding brings the total raised to $41 million. ImmunoScape, a spin-off from the Singapore Institute of Science, Technology and Research, now has 10 scientists in San Diego and 43 employees worldwide.

The round was led by existing investor Anzu Partners, with participation from Amgen Ventures and Singapore-based global investor EDBI. It opened its San Diego lab last year.

ImmunoScape is developing platform technologies designed to discover and analyze rare cancer-specific T cell receptors — proteins on immune cells that bind to abnormal cells in the body, such as viruses or cancer cells. The immune cells then attack the rogue cells to help fight infection and disease.

The company combines computational biology, machine learning and high-throughput screening to assess cancer-targeting T cell receptors in blood samples. It validated its approach with virus-specific T-cell receptors and is now applying the same approach to discover cancer-specific receptors.

“Their unique high-throughput T cell receptor discovery and evaluation platform has the unprecedented ability to test millions of human T cells against hundreds of cancer antigens,” said David Michael, managing partner at Anzu Partners.

The company calls its technology “deep immunoomics.” Choon Peng Ng, chief executive of ImmunoScape, said the new funding will allow it to speed up development work and advance its therapeutic candidates into clinical trials.

“We are particularly pleased that Amgen Ventures has become an investor, and we look forward to working with their team to leverage ImmunoScape’s technology to address important unmet medical needs,” said Ng.

Source link