SAN FRANCISCO – January 19, 2022
Proceeds will support the company’s continued growth as a pioneer in built-to-purpose technology platforms for the development and manufacturing of cell and gene-based therapies Financing led by Casdin Capital with participation from other new investors Dynamk Capital, Formic Ventures, and Labcorp
Xcell Biosciences, Inc. (“Xcellbio”), a leading developer of innovative technologies and platforms designed to further the research, development, and manufacturing of cell and gene therapies, today announced $27.5 million in Series B financing led by Casdin Capital. Also participating in this financing are new investors Dynamk Capital, Formic Ventures, and Labcorp, as well as existing investors HBM Genomics and Viking Global Investors. In connection with the financing, Shaun Rodriguez, PhD, Director of Life Science Research at Casdin Capital, will join the Xcellbio board of directors.
“This new financing is an important validation of our successful track record and unique position in supporting immunotherapy researchers with innovative technology platforms focused on improving the performance of cell and gene therapies,” said Brian S. Feth, Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer at Xcellbio. “With the backing of this world-class syndicate of life sciences investors, we are well positioned to support our growing customer base and continue scaling our efforts to deliver first-in-class platforms that enable the development of cell and gene therapies with the potency, persistence, and quality needed for optimal patient outcomes.”
A portion of the financing proceeds will be utilized to further advance the production of Xcellbio’s new cell manufacturing platform, the KALI Cell Foundry. The platform will deliver unique capabilities to support the development of therapeutic products with improved potency and persistence as well as reduced cell exhaustion. Powering these features are proprietary technologies and advanced machine learning algorithms that can, for example, mimic immunosuppressive tumor microenvironments through the tightly controlled modulation of gas pressures and oxygen concentrations.
“For cell and gene therapies, it is critical to know that the cells being administered to a patient are functionally and persistently potent. Conditioning them to tumor microenvironments during the manufacturing process ensures that the cells will be ready to tackle tumor cells in the patient,” said James Lim, PhD, Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer at Xcell Biosciences. “We are at an exciting moment in the development of cell and gene-based therapies, and we are honored to work with the global community of therapy producers to transform the treatment of cancer with these novel medicines.”
Xcellbio’s new manufacturing platform will complement the company’s AVATAR™ and AVATAR AI™ systems, which have been deployed in more than 130 research and industry labs globally. Studies conducted using AVATAR systems have been featured in leading peer-reviewed journals including Nature, Cancer Discovery, Cell Stem Cell, and the International Journal of Molecular Sciences, among others.
"We have long appreciated the critical role of the broader tools ecosystem to exploit the potential of advanced therapies, cell and gene therapies in particular. We are continually impressed with the Xcellbio team and their vision for making cell and gene therapies safer and more effective through their pioneering technologies for improving performance which uniquely positions the company to open new markets and extend their continuum of solutions,” said Shaun Rodriguez, PhD, Director of Life Science Research at Casdin Capital and Xcellbio Board Member. “We are pleased to lead this new round of financing and look forward to working with the Xcellbio team as they enter this exciting phase of growth.”
Xcellbio is a venture-backed company driven by its mission to enhance the performance and safety of cell and gene-based therapies through the design and development of revolutionary technology platforms. The company’s commercial instruments and AI-driven software allow researchers to discover novel insights into immune and tumor biology and enable the translation of these insights at patient scale through the development of its pioneering cell therapy manufacturing platform. Based in San Francisco, Xcellbio can also be found online at www.xcellbio.com.