Camel-IDS, a VUB spin-off company developing cancer-targeted radiopharmaceuticals, today secured EUR 37m in a Series A investment round led by V-Bio Ventures (Belgium) and Gimv (Belgium), joined by the co- lead investors HealthCap (Sweden), Novo Seeds (Denmark), Pontifax (Israel) and BioMedPartners (Switzerland). Existing investors also participated. The proceeds will enable Camel-IDS to run a phase Ib/II trial with its lead program CAM-H2 targeting HER2-positive brain metastatic breast cancer, while further progressing and broadening its preclinical pipeline.
Breast cancer patients with tumors that overexpress HER2, a growth-promoting protein, can benefit from effective targeted treatments today, yet have a poor prognosis when the cancer progresses towards the brain. Camel-IDS’ lead program CAM-H2 aims to effectively irradiate brain lesions while sparing healthy tissue, based on its unique technology platform that leverages the favorable tissue distribution of camelid derived single domain antibodies linked to radionuclides. The company’s technology platform also allows for a theranostic approach, where patients can be selected using a low dose/imaging version of the product, followed by a high therapeutic dose for treatment.
In connection with the financing Christina Takke from V-Bio, Karl Naegler from Gimv, Mårten Steen from HealthCap, Morten Graugaard Døssing from Novo Seeds and Ohad Hammer from Pontifax will join the board of directors.
Ruth Devenyns, CEO of Camel-IDS comments: ‘The successful financing underscores the potential of our innovative technology and product pipeline. We are grateful for the continued support from our existing shareholders and look forward to welcoming the new international investor syndicate that has extensive experience in leveraging platform technologies to develop multi-product opportunities.’
Tony Lahoutte, CSO and co-founder complements: ‘Brain metastases in breast cancer are devastating for patients and difficult to treat. The lead program at Camel-IDS is focused on the development of a new treatment option for this condition. We are heartened by the strong interest of the investors that will enable us to bring this treatment to the patients.’
Karl Naegler, Partner in Gimv’s Health & Care platform, adds: ‘From early on in our discussions, the renowned expertise of the Camel-IDS’ team in radio-immunotherapy became clear, with Prof. Tony Lahoutte bringing exceptional knowledge to the table. Together with Ruth Devenyns as CEO, an industry veteran of the European biotech landscape and successful entrepreneur, the company is well positioned to move up to the next level.’
Christina Takke, Managing Partner at V-Bio Ventures, comments: ‘The successful fundraise for Camel-IDS is testament to the investors’ appetite for excellent science and technology. This funding round will accelerate innovation that can make a difference to patients. We are excited to be part of this journey.’