Imperial Innovations Group plc has increased its support for MISSION Therapeutics by committing £4.5m of a £20m funding round. Innovations had previously participated in a £6m round for MISSION in August 2011.
MISSION is a biotechnology company developing drugs that target a cell’s response to DNA damage. Innovations is joined in the round by new investor Pfizer Venture Investments and other existing investors Sofinnova Partners, SR One and Roche Venture Fund.
The financing round will enable MISSION to advance its lead programmes for the treatment of various genetically defined cancers, through preclinical development and to exploit further the potential of its novel technology platform.
MISSION was formed to exploit advances in the biology of the DNA damage response for the discovery of new classes of therapeutic agents with novel mechanisms of action.
Utilizing fundamental research principally generated in the laboratory of Professor Stephen Jackson, MISSION has progressed several small molecule discovery programmes focused on key enzymes in the ubiquitin pathway to selectively target difficult-to-treat cancers.
Rob Woodman, Director of Healthcare Investments at Innovations and a non-executive director on MISSION’s board, said: “MISSION’s strong leadership team has made excellent progress in translating fundamental knowledge from the laboratory into a strong drug discovery platform. The VC arms of three of the world’s top five pharmaceutical companies are now supporting MISSION with SR One, Roche Ventures and now Pfizer Ventures investing alongside Innovations, and this is a great endorsement of our model of building companies based on world-class science.”
Michael Moore, Executive Chairman, MISSION, said: “This timely investment will significantly enhance our internal capabilities and strategic goals. It will enable us to build on the Company’s achievements since inception two years ago, strengthen our management team and advance our lead compounds towards the clinic.”