Cancer diagnosis and therapy in one: Precirix tackles tumors with camelid antibodies

A new drug that can identify tumors, trace metastases, and treat cancer – all in one? Belgian start-up Precirix is aiming high with its lead compound – a precision radiopharmaceutical using camelid antibodies to bind to, and irradiate, cancer cells.
Moderna Therapeutics has never really been a typical biotech. Sure, nowadays it is world famous thanks to its COVID-19 vaccine, which has resulted in an $80 billion market cap and projected sales of $18.4 billion for 2021. But the path to success has not been that of a standard biotech’s journey. Through ups and downs, controversies and triumphs, here’s the fascinating story behind the rise of Moderna and the creation of its COVID-19 vaccine.
CEOs of start-ups face many challenges. Among many tasks, they have to set up the organization, write the business plan, build an effective management team and, of course, attract finance. How concerned should they be with the composition of the board? And what can CEOs do to ensure that the board helps rather than hinders their company?
Much has been written about the psychology of decision making and how venture capitalists choose which companies they want to fund. Although due diligence is an important part of the process, first impressions and emotions play a huge role in reaching that stage. Diverse teams are vital to making sure that gut reactions aren’t driving poor investment choices in VC funds.
Ghent, Belgium, 8 April 2021 - Today V-Bio Ventures announces its investment in Ghent-based company Protealis, a new spin-off from VIB and ILVO. Inspired by the mission to grow more sustainable plant-based proteins locally, Protealis aims to harvest the full potential of legume crops. With innovative breeding technologies and proprietary seed coatings, Protealis will create new opportunities for European farmers to help overcome Europe’s protein deficit. The initial focus is to develop high-yielding, high-protein soybean varieties. V-Bio Ventures led the EUR 6 million seed financing round joined by Agri Investment Fund (AIF), Participatiemaatschappij Vlaanderen (PMV), Estari Group, Globachem Group, Gemma Frisius Fund and VIB. The capital will support the company’s plans to further develop its proprietary technology, expand its crop portfolio and bring the first soy varieties adapted to local needs to the market by 2022.
Ghent-based AgomAb Therapeutics recently raised a Series B of $74 million, the largest round ever for a Belgian biotech in pre-clinical phase. Based on argenx’ technology, the company is developing HGF-mimetic antibodies for regenerative medicine. AgomAb has come a long way since it’s foundation in 2017 and has been pegged by many as one of the future stars of Belgian biotech.
V-Bio Ventures recently announced their second fund, with the first closing already totaling 78 million euros [final close at 110 million euros - Ed.]. As a VC fund with a focus on early-stage life sciences companies, V-Bio will be using Fund 2 to continue supporting European start-ups working on effective healthcare or sustainable agriculture solutions. In this interview, co-founders Christina Takke and Willem Broekaert, along with new Managing Partner Shelley Margetson, share some success stories from V-Bio’s first five years and how they plan to create value for both investors and society in the future.
First Closing of V-Bio Fund 2 is announced at EUR 78 million. V-Bio Fund 2 will ensure seamless continuation of investment activities in early-stage European life sciences companies. V-Bio Ventures announces expansion of executive team, with Shelley Margetson joining as Managing Partner
Gent, Belgium, 27 October 2020 – Today V-Bio Ventures announces its investment in Animab, a new venture spin-off from VIB, in a EUR 3.4 million Seed financing round. The company develops monoclonal antibodies for oral administration to ensure intestinal health of livestock. The initial focus is on improving the resilience of piglets during the fragile post-weaning period. The start-up will use the seed capital to develop its first oral antibody product for protection against ETEC and initiate a product portfolio for the livestock industry.