Financing will accelerate momentum toward unlocking the linearity between discovery and manufacturing to enable next generation engineered cell therapies
CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS — Sept 28, 2021—Kytopen Corp., a biotechnology company spun out of MIT offering a scalable technology for engineered cell therapies, today announced it has raised $30 million in an oversubscribed Series A funding. The new capital will be used to commercialize Kytopen’s Flowfect® Tx for cGMP-compliant cell therapy manufacturing and move towards treating the first human patient with Flowfect® engineered cells. Kytopen’s mission is to enable simple and efficient non-viral manufacturing of cell therapies in days versus weeks to increase patient access to life-saving therapies.
The Series A investor syndicate was led by the experienced life sciences investment team at Northpond Ventures, a leading science-driven venture capital firm, with participation from current investors: The Engine, Horizons Ventures, and MassVentures, as well as Aldevron Co-Founders Michael Chambers and John Ballantyne and Alexandria Venture Investments. Adam Wieschhaus, Ph.D., CFA, Director at Northpond Ventures, will join the Kytopen board of directors along with Kytopen Co-Founders Paulo Garcia and Cullen Buie and Theresa Tribble, Venture Partner at The Engine.
“We are thrilled to partner with Northpond and their innovative ecosystem to develop and commercialize our Flowfect technology. Together with Northpond’s talented and experienced team we will continue to unlock industry bottlenecks and pave the way for cost-effective engineered cell therapies,” said Paulo Garcia, Ph.D., CEO and Co-Founder, Kytopen. “We are actively executing on therapeutic and academic collaborations and this funding and network will be the catalyst to accelerate our partners into the clinic and beyond. I am tremendously proud of the entire Kytopen team’s achievements and future contributions to make these potentially life-saving cell therapies more accessible to patients.”
The new funding will also accelerate the commercialization of Kytopen’s high-throughput automated platform, which seamlessly links discovery to manufacturing and has the potential to unlock personalized medicines. The company’s proprietary Flowfect® platform is a transformative solution that eliminates the complexity of gene editing and integrates discovery, development, and manufacturing in one flexible and scalable non-viral delivery solution.
“Cellular engineering is a vastly manual, time-consuming process. While the market demands acceleration and scale, a cell’s fragility requires that methods are also gentle from lab to clinic,” said Adam Wieschhaus, Ph.D., CFA, Director at Northpond Ventures. “Kytopen is unlocking potential in genetic engineering at speeds 10,000 faster than current state-of-the-art methods while still maintaining cellular composition. Northpond is excited to collaborate with Kytopen to advance non-viral manufacturing and bring much needed cell therapies to patients.”
Kytopen’s proprietary Flowfect® technology speeds therapies from discovery to the clinic by enabling cell engineering without compromising functionality or viability. Flowfect® reduces risk and provides maximum control and flexibility to reduce time to market by months or even years while providing safer and cost-efficient engineered cell therapies.The Flowfect® technology utilizes electro-mechanical energy to gently introduce genetic material such as RNA, DNA, or CRISPR/Cas RNP, to a wide variety of hard-to-transfect primary human cells. The Flowfect® technology enables cell engineering in minutes for target discovery and process development optimization. For example, 96-well plates can be processed in less than 10 minutes while direct scale up to clinical manufacturing volumes is facilitated by the processing rate of 2 billion cells per minute in a single channel.
About Northpond Ventures
Northpond Ventures is a science-driven venture capital firm. Northpond partners with leading scientists, academics, and entrepreneurs to develop and empower breakthrough science and technology that transforms humanity. The firm has over $2 billion in committed capital and offices in San Francisco, Cambridge, and Bethesda. Northpond was founded with a mission to build a better tomorrow. Northpond Labs, the firm’s research and development-focused affiliate, collaborates with universities, research centers, and scientists to fund translational research that is poised to be the foundation of new ventures and scientific discovery. Learn more at www.npv.vc.
Kytopen, a spin-out of Prof. Cullen Buie’s lab at MIT, is a transformative biotechnology company that offers a customizable yet scalable multi-solution platform, which seamlessly links the discovery, development, and manufacturing phases of cell engineering. Flowfect®, a gentle, non-viral delivery method unlocks new therapeutic approaches, by engineering immune cells with minimal disruption, preserving the functionality and viability of human cells and enhancing the cell’s biology. The Flowfect® platform accelerates therapies from the bench to the clinic through flexibility and scalability, which drives higher cell yields, faster approvals, and better outcomes from potentially curative cell-based treatments. For more information, visit: www.kytopen.com