Financing will support advancement of lead HIV potential cure program into clinical development
SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 17, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Excision BioTherapeutics (“Excision”), a leading developer of potentially curative CRISPR anti-viral therapies to improve patient lives, today announced the completion of a $60 million financing. The proceeds will be used to advance Excision’s lead candidate, EBT-101, into a Phase 1/2 clinical trial in patients with chronic HIV infection. The financing will also support preclinical programs including EBT-103 targeting JC Virus for Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy (PML), EBT-104 for Herpes Simplex Virus, and EBT-107 for Hepatitis B.
The financing round was led by GreatPoint Ventures with support from existing investor ARTIS Ventures. New investors include Adjuvant Capital, Norwest Venture Partners, Anzu Partners, Cota Capital, WRVI Capital, IndusAge Partners, Loreda Holdings, and Olive Tree Capital. Ashok Krishnamurthi, Managing Partner at GreatPoint Ventures, will join the Board of Directors.
“The vast capabilities of CRISPR are beginning to be translated into treatments with the potential to cure diseases plaguing humanity,” stated Krishnamurthi. “Excision’s unique approach leverages CRISPR’s natural evolution in bacteria to target and deactivate viral genes, which promises to maximize both the safety and efficacy of its development programs. We are extremely excited to partner with the Company to bring these groundbreaking therapies to patients around the world.”
Kamel Khalili, Ph.D., Laura H. Carnell Professor and Chair of the Department of Neuroscience, Director of the Center for Neurovirology, and Director of the Comprehensive NeuroAIDS Center at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University (LKSOM) and the Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Consultant to Excision said, “This transformative financing will accelerate and support the research we have developed over the past decade. We have proven the technology and candidate programs in vitro and in vivo in both small animal models and primate models. We are optimistic that ongoing research will demonstrate the potential for a future therapeutic to generate functional cures for viral infectious diseases.”
Vasudev Bailey, PhD, Senior Partner at ARTIS Ventures which led Excision’s Series Seed round commented, “Over 38 million people live with HIV and more than 250 million live with Hepatitis B around the world. We are hopeful that Excision’s technology has the potential to eradicate these, as well as other diseases including PML and Herpes Virus.”
Daniel Dornbusch, CEO of Excision added, “We are encouraged by the level of interest in our approach and are thrilled to have strong support from such an outstanding group of investors, each with broad networks of support, to help advance the Company and its programs. We look forward to building the team and infrastructure to progress Excision’s innovative programs with the goal of delivering therapies to patients in need.”
About Excision BioTherapeutics, Inc.
Excision BioTherapeutics, Inc., is a biotechnology company developing CRISPR-based therapies to cure viral infectious diseases. Excision is focused on improving the lives of chronically ill patients by eliminating viral genomes from infected individuals. By using CRISPR in unique ways, the Company has already demonstrated the first functional cure for HIV in animals. Excision is developing technologies and IP developed at Temple University and U.C. Berkeley. Excision is located in San Francisco, California and is supported by ARTIS Ventures, GreatPoint Ventures, Norwest Venture Partners, Adjuvant Capital, Cota Capital, WRVI Capital, IndusAge Partners, Loreda Holdings, Olive Tree, Anzu Partners, SilverRidge Venture Partners, Oakhouse Ventures, and Gaingels. For more information, please visit www.excision.bio.
Editor’s Note: Kamel Khalili is Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Consultant, and holds equity in Excision Biotherapeutics, which has licensed the viral gene editing technology from Temple University. Kamel Khalili is a named inventor on patents that cover the viral gene editing technology. Dr. Khalili is employed by Temple University, and both he and LKSOM faculty within his department conduct research activities sponsored by the company. Questions regarding his affiliation with Temple University may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to owning the viral gene editing technology that Excision is licensing, Temple University also holds an equity interest in Excision. As a result of these interests, Temple University could ultimately potentially benefit financially from the outcome of this research. These interests have been reviewed and approved by Temple University in accordance with its Institutional Conflict of Interest policy. Questions about this can be directed to email@example.com.
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