Novocell Announces Closing of a $25 Million Series C Financing
News Jul 17, 2007
Novocell, Inc., a stem cell engineering company has announced the closing of a $25 million Series C financing. The financing included participation by existing investors Sanderling Ventures, Asset Management Company and Pacific Horizon Ventures and was led by Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation.
"This very successful financing was driven by Novocell's stem cell engineering expertise, superb scientific team and execution of key milestones toward the development of a first-in-class cell therapy for insulin requiring diabetics," said Alan J. Lewis, President, Chief Executive Officer and Director of Novocell.
Lewis continued, "Future milestones include the preclinical development of our diabetes cell therapy, enhancement of our cancer stem cell program to create new therapies for cancer and the development of additional cell therapies based on our significant know-how and research expertise in this arena."
Novocell's platform technologies - human embryonic stem cell (hESC) engineering, cell encapsulation and drug discovery - are designed to address the need for an unlimited supply of specialized human cells for the treatment of a wide range of chronic cellular diseases.
The Company has developed a process to convert hESC into insulin-producing pancreatic endocrine cells. Additionally, its cell encapsulation technology provides a means by which such cells could potentially be delivered to patients without the need for chronic immunosuppression by providing a protective, biocompatible coating for cells that shields them from the immune system.
The spatial and temporal dynamics of proteins or organelles plays a crucial role in controlling various cellular processes and in development of diseases. However, acute control of activity at distinct locations within a cell cannot be achieved. A new chemo-optogenetic method enables tunable, reversible, and rapid control of activity at multiple subcellular compartments within a living cell.