Lactiga Therapeutics, an early-stage biotechnology company focused on improving the quality of life of patients with primary immunodeficiency diseases, announced this week that it has oversubscribed its pre-seed financing, raising $1.6 million in new capital including over $350,000 in research grants (including the SOPHIE program run by Innovation Factory). The lead investor in the financing was 1517 Fund, and other investors include several private firms with significant biotechnology experience.
“We’re thrilled to be backing the Lactiga team in their effort to use naturally produced antibodies to alleviate the pain and suffering of immunocompromised patients and consumers at large. The team understands the impact on everybody involved – donors, patients, consumers, and researchers – and I’m glad they are the ones at the forefront of this work,” said Zak Slayback, a partner at 1517 Fund.
“Founded by the cofounders of the Thiel Fellowship, we are excited to welcome the experience and perspectives Zak and the 1517 team will bring to our venture. This new capital will advance the research and development of our novel therapeutic antibodies that can represent the next generation of anti-infectives for patients who are unable to produce their own antibodies,” said Rik Mehta, PharmD, JD, LLM, Cofounder, Lactiga Therapeutics.
In addition to the capital raised, the company, which is based in New Jersey and Toronto, has secured over $350,000 in nondilutive grants and awards over the last four months, including funds from the New Jersey Commission on Science, Innovation and Technology (CSIT) and Innovation Factory’s Southern Ontario Pharmaceutical and Health Innovation Ecosystem (SOPHIE) program. These funded projects further the company’s preclinical studies and strengthen its intellectual property portfolio.
“Funding New Jersey startups like Lactiga Therapeutics through programs such as the Catalyst Seed Research and Development (R&D) Grant Program helps us to build a strong innovation economy and furthers Governor Phil Murphy’s vision for the state,” said CSIT Executive Director Judith Sheft. “By cultivating companies within New Jersey during their formative years, we are working to promote financial growth, sustainability, and economic mobility for years to come.”
The company plans to use the raised capital, grants, and awards to complete its preclinical studies for Lactiga’s two primary development programs, LCTG-001 (for patients with Common Variable Immunodeficiency) and LCTG-002 (for patients with COVID-19 and its variants) and plans to file its first Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration with plans to start human clinical trials in 2023.
“We are pleased to support Lactiga’s collaborative project with McMaster University during an important phase of their commercialization journey – leading to new intellectual property, jobs, follow-on investment and pharmaceutical development. Through SOPHIE, (a program supported through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario) Lactiga will also have access to an extensive strategic health innovation ecosystem, further enabling their market potential for success,” said David Carter, Executive Director at Innovation Factory.
Lactiga is advancing its novel antibody programs derived from human milk, for patients with primary immunodeficiencies and COVID-19, based on its patented technologies. The company has demonstrated positive topline nonclinical efficacy results. For inquiries, please reach out to [email protected].
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