HEPHAISTOS-Pharma secures a €2 million seed round with xista science ventures, Foundation Fournier-Majoie and Noshaq
1st institutional round for HEPHAISTOS-Pharma, getting on track to bring its lead product ONCO-Boost to the clinic.
ONCO-Boost is a novel class of TLR4 immunostimulants that turn cold tumors into hot ones, increasing the efficacy of other therapies, notably immune-checkpoint inhibitors.
Orsay, France, January 23rd, 2024. HEPHAISTOS-Pharma, a biotechnology company developing next generation immunotherapies against cancer, today announced that it has raised a €2 million seed round to finance GMP transfer and advance its lead candidate towards the clinic. The round was co-led by xista science ventures and the Foundation Fournier-Majoie, with the participation of Noshaq.
« The Foundation is very pleased to be part of HEPHAISTOS-Pharma thanks to this financing round. The valuable and dedicated team developed a promising TLR4 compound that will be used systemically which will bring to the oncologists a best-in-class product for their cancer patients. We are eager to help the company bring to the clinic this innovative program. » said Jerome Majoie, CEO and Chairman at Fournier- Majoie Foundation.
“We are very proud to be joined by institutional investors” said Frederic CAROFF, CEO, and co-founder of HEPHAISTOS-Pharma. “They bring the necessary funds to match our non-dilutive financing, but also the expertise and network that will help structure the company. They will play a critical role in the success of HEPHAISTOS as we move our platform to the clinic. We are also thankful to our historical investors and new business angels from Angels Santé, who joined the round.”
The proceeds from this financing round will enable HEPHAISTOS to industrialize its manufacturing process and prepare for the clinical phases, with the goal of advancing its lead candidate, ONCO-Boost, into clinical development for the treatment of solid tumors with high unmet medical needs, in particular sarcoma. Ingrid Kelly, Partner at xista science ventures, commented that « HEPHAISTOS has an impressive set of preclinical data, showing the high potential of their TLR4 agonist ONCO-Boost to tackle solid tumors, particularly in combination with immunotherapies such as checkpoint inhibitors.
The proceeds will also be used to open a new subsidiary in Liège, Wallonia. The objective will be to leverage local state-of -the-art facilities and expertise to explore additional applications and strengthen HEPHAISTOS’ pipeline. “We are delighted to attract HEPHAISTOS to develop part of its activities in our vibrant local ecosystem. In the midst of a challenging market landscape, Noshaq remains a magnet for innovative companies with a disruptive approach and high-level management” said Eric Brandt, Investment Manager at NOSHAQ.