Actinobac Biomed Inc., started with an investment from Foundation Venture Capital Group (FVCG), Inc., an affiliate of New Jersey Health Foundation (NJHF), has received an investment from Kairos Ventures of up to $4.4 million to continue its groundbreaking research, announced James M. Golubieski, president of FVCG.
Foundation Venture Capital Group invested in Actinobac to advance its work for the treatment of hematological malignancies (leukemias & lymphomas), autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Crohn's disease, type 1 diabetes, lupus, and psoriasis), and HIV infection.
"We provided Actinobac with its first investment, allowing the company to advance its groundbreaking research to where it is today," said George F. Heinrich, M.D., vice chair and CEO of FVCG. "We are confident that this next investment will allow Actinobac to continue its important work."
Actinobac is developing Leukothera®, a protein therapeutic that is able to seek out and destroy white blood cells that are involved in various diseases. The technology was originally developed at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey.
"Rutgers is very excited about this important funding that will allow Actinobac to advance the Leukothera® technology toward commercialization," said S. David Kimball, PhD, associate vice president of Research Commercialization at Rutgers. "This can have major implications for the treatment of blood cancer patients. It also strengthens our relationship with NJHF and Kairos Ventures in our mutual effort to further support university innovation that benefits society."
Scott Kachlany, PhD, Actinobac co-founder, noted, "The investment from Kairos, in conjunction with funding from the National Cancer Institute, will be vital for the advancement of Leukothera® into human clinical trials, eventually making it available to patients suffering from leukemia and lymphoma."
Foundation Venture Capital Group
Foundation Venture Capital Group, an affiliate of New Jersey Health Foundation, invests in commercially viable new start-up companies developing health-related technology at major research universities in New Jersey with which they have affiliations. In addition to Actinobac, FVCG portfolio companies currently include:
- Affineti Biologics, Inc., advancing research in the development of therapeutic and diagnostic products based on new discoveries in oral biology and dental medicine;
- Celvive, Inc., working to develop technology to treat patients with chronic spinal cord injuries with their own adult stem cells;
- Durin Technologies, working to develop a blood test to diagnose and assess severity of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases;
- GeneAssess, Inc., developing the FRY gene as a predictive biomarker for breast and other cancers;
- MentiNova, Inc., working to validate a drug that reduces the side effects of L-Dopa Induced Dyskinesia;
- NovoPedics, Inc., developing an implantable meniscus replacement/regeneration medical device to restore mobility to patients suffering from severe meniscus knee injuries;
- Snowdon Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a drug discovery company focused on several major therapeutic areas and providing computational tools to rapidly identify high-value molecules from their library of vendor-available compounds;
- Visikol, Inc., developing a versatile biological clearing agent that penetrates tissue and renders it transparent without causing structural damage for application in the fields of toxicology, pre-clinical drug development, clinical diagnostics, basic research and plant biology as tissues can be easily visualized in 3 dimensions.