ImmuSmol is pleased to announce it has raised 500 000 € to progress its monoclonal antibodies for cancer immunotherapy to in vivo proof-of-concept (POC).
A fifty-fifty public/private financing
This initial financing was supported by the Aquitaine Regional Council, Bpifrance, as well as private investors. ImmuSmol CEO Alban Bessede commented: “Small molecules have not yet been exploited as drug targets in the field of cancer immunotherapy. Our first in vivo results have confirmed the potency of our antibodies. With this additional funding, our goal is to establish a solid preclinical proof-of-concept, to set up new industrial or financial partnerships in 2015”.
Novel therapeutic & diagnostic tools for cancer immunotherapy
While current antibody-based cancer immunotherapies concentrate on protein targets such as CTLA-4, PD-1 and PDL-1, ImmuSmol is targeting small molecules involved in tumor immune escape. « Over the last years, immune checkpoint inhibitors yielded exciting results, with unprecedented anti-tumor response on a long-term basis. Unfortunately, only a fraction of patients responds to these treatments” explains Alban Bessede. “With our small molecule antibodies, we aim at tackling two key challenges: to identify patients who might benefit from current cancer immunotherapies and to enhance their efficacy». Besides preclinical studies, ImmuSmol is thus currently collaborating with teams from Bordeaux’s comprehensive cancer center – the Institut Bergonié – to validate its biomarker approach in clinical samples.