Crown Bioscience, Inc. has announced receiving investment of $26.55 million in series D funding led by Lilly Asia Ventures Fund II L.P. The investment will be used to fund rapid expansion plans for their translational platform technologies in oncology and metabolic diseases, which allow drug development companies to make quicker and better-informed decisions on clinical drug candidates.
The investment, which closed on 25th April, will provide Crown with the ability to expand its technologies, including the HuPrime®, HuKemia®, HuBase™, HuMark™, HuTrial™ and HuSignature™ platforms, which enable unique lead optimization and translational strategies to deliver superior clinical candidates for partners.
Dr Jean-Pierre Wery, President of Crown Bioscience, said; “The investment will allow us to expand our drug development services in oncology and metabolic disease to meet the demand and interest our technologies have generated through dramatically improving the clinical success of promising clinical candidates. Together with this, the investment will be used to actively pursue potential acquisition opportunities to further enhance our market leading position. Putting expansion plans into motion, we can offer partners the ability to test their drug candidates on a greater range of unique models, providing them with even better decision making potential before moving into clinical trials. Our patient-derived xenograph model (PDX) collection, HuPrime®, is now 1,000 models in size, and this funding will accelerate the pace at which we can expand the world’s largest collection of PDX.”
Crown’s HuPrime PDX model collection is currently the largest collection of unique tumor xenograft models in the world, with the majority kept in live passage in order to run HuTrialTM, human surrogate clinical trial simulations. By expanding the HuPrime collection further, the HuTrial platform will be able to more accurately predict the efficacy of potential drug candidates on a greater number of varied cancer subtypes before advancing the candidate into the clinic. This will significantly reduce development costs and ensure that the most effective treatments progress through trials and go on to improving patient outcomes in the clinic.