Biotech startup Zumutor Biologics has raised $4 Mn in fresh funding from Bharat Innovation Fund and Accel Partners.
The startup, which specialises in the immuno-oncology space, said the fresh capital will be used for the process of new drug filing of its lead molecule (ZM 008) in India. Additionally, the new fund will also be used during the first phase of clinical trials by the end of 2020.
The newly infused capital brings the total funding of the startup to $20 Mn so far.
“Our first-in-class lead molecule, ZM 008 has made industry validated progress and is poised for IND filing with Phase 1a/1b clinical trials likely to commence end of 2020,” said founder and CEO of Zumutor Biologics, Kavita Iyer Rodrigues.
Zumutor Biologics develops natural killer (NK) cells therapeutics with a first-in-class antibody to treat prostate cancer. The startup has developed two antibody engineering platforms to facilitate the discovery and development of immunotherapies that have the potential to be monotherapies, and core components of innovative combination treatments.
The startup, founded in 2013, has set in place platforms to develop novel immunotherapies that target innate immunity and regulate the tumour microenvironment.
Zumutor Biologics has partnered with global biopharmaceutical companies for early-stage licensing of pipeline and to jointly discover and develop innovative products. The team has licensed its biologic product for the treatment of breast cancer and is engaged in collaborations related to technology platforms. The startup had earlier raised capital from Accel Partners, IDG ventures, Aarin Capital and Karnataka Information Technology Venture Capital Fund (KITVEN).
“The strong pipeline that Zumutor has developed combined with a relatively differentiated NK cell approach could lead to breakthrough treatments for multiple cancers,” founding partner at Bharat Innovation Fund Ashwin Raguraman told ET. Immuno-Oncology company is headquartered in Massachusetts US and has a laboratory in Bengaluru for research and development.
In 2016, the Bengaluru-based startup partnered with US-based global major Catalent Pharma Solutions and completed a research study that can potentially lead to greater efficacy in the treatment of cancer. The successful completion of the study has led to a global alliance between the two entities.
In India, Zumutor Biologics competes with a number of cancer-centric health-tech startups such as NIRAMAI, Mitra Biotech, OncoStem Diagnostics, Sascan, Exocan, and Onward Health, among others.