Biological cancer treatment company Novellus raises $57 million
Novellus develops a drug that delays the development of a BRAF gene mutation created in cases of thyroid cancer and glioma cancer
Novellus’ technology is based on a molecule it leased from Plexxikon Inc., a subsidiary of Tokyo-listed pharmaceutical multinational Daiichi Sankyo Co. Ltd. Should Novellus be successful in developing the drug, Plexxikon will receive 3%-5% in royalties.
Novellus was founded in 2011, as a diagnostics company and pivoted to pharmaceuticals about a year ago, after it appointed its chief commercial officer Michael Vidne as CEO. “The funding round will allow the company to realize the potential of its molecule as a unique response for delaying BRAF gene mutations,” Vidne said in a statement.
“Novellus recently changed its course and is now aiming at the future market for cancer medication,” Pontifax managing partner Ran Nussbaum told Calcalist in an interview. It is highly probable that Novellus will develop the cure for a medical problem that currently has no treatment, he added.Prior to the current funding round, Novellus raised $14 million. Following the completion of the round, the share of medical cannabis company InterCure Ltd., chaired by former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, in Novellus will be diluted from 9% to 1%.