Seattle, WA, September 1, 2020 – Lumen Bioscience, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing biologic drugs for highly prevalent diseases, today announced the closing of a $16 million Series B financing. The financing was co-led by new investor WestRiver Management and returning investor Bioeconomy Capital, with additional participation from existing investors Avista Development, Columbia Pacific, Lumen’s founders, and Seattle-area angels.
The round brings Lumen’s total equity and non-dilutive investment to $68 million and will support continued advancement of Lumen’s three clinical programs for C. difficile, norovirus and traveler’s diarrhea.
“Lumen’s rapid progress into the clinical reflects the power of our unique drug development environment to find solutions to treat and prevent common diseases that afflict hundreds of millions around the world each year,” said Brian Finrow, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Lumen. “We are thankful for this vote of confidence from our investors as well as the non-dilutive funding support we continue to receive through our ongoing collaborations with government agencies and foundations that invest in human health. Together we are exploring the tremendous value that cost-effective, scalable biologic drugs can offer the world.”
Lumen is radically changing previous assumptions about the cost, scale and time at which biologic drugs such as antibodies can be manufactured by genetically engineering spirulina, a type of blue-green algae that is cultivated and consumed around the world. The proprietary approach allows for rapid and low-cost mass production of new biologic drugs at a small fraction of the cost of traditional batch-fermentation technologies.
To date, Lumen has advanced its lead therapeutic for traveler’s diarrhea into clinical development and has generated strong preclinical data in its programs directed against norovirus and C. difficile infection. Lumen also commissioned its dedicated cGMP manufacturing plant, which is currently manufacturing approximately 3 kg of drug material per week for Lumen’s clinical and pre-clinical programs, sufficient for all of its planned clinical development programs.
“Lumen’s innovative technology platform allows the Company to generate a sustainable pipeline of novel therapeutics addressing major unmet needs,” said George Montgomery of WestRiver Management. “The rapid progress that Lumen has achieved in target identification, development, and manufacturing is remarkable, and we are pleased to support Lumen’s mission to expand the use of its biologic drug technology into new treatment areas that were previously blocked due to biologics delivery challenges or cost and scalability issues.”
Lumen has completed a Phase 1 safety and dose-escalation trial of LMN-101 for treatment of travelers’ diarrhea (NCT04098263), and plans to initiate a Phase 2 trial in early 2021.
Lumen Bioscience discovers, develops and manufactures biologic drugs and vaccine candidates for several prevalent, worldwide diseases—many of which currently lack any effective treatments. The company’s unique drug development and manufacturing platform offers the potential to transform the biologics industry through increased speed, mass-market scale and exponentially lower costs than current approaches.