Vancouver-based biotech firm Gandeeva Therapeutics recently secured $40 million in its Series A funding round. The lead investors were venture capital firm Lux Capital and Leaps by Bayer, the venture arm of pharmaceutics company Bayer.
Obvious Ventures, Amgen Ventures, Amplitude Ventures, and Air Street Capital also participated in the round. A spokesperson told BetaKit that the $40 million raised is Gandeeva’s total funding to date.
Founded in 2018, Gandeeva is developing precision imaging solutions with the integration of cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and artificial intelligence (AI). Its technology can be applied to advance drug discovery and by lowering risks of late-stage clinical failures.
Gandeeva’s platform combines technologies across biochemistry, structural biology, imaging, and machine learning to characterize protein-drug interactions at the atomic level, designed to provide new insights into targeting protein function.
The company noted its leadership team includes scientific and business leaders who established cryo-EM’s potential for drug discovery use, as well as experts in medicinal chemistry and drug development.
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The CEO and founder of Gandeeva, Sriram Subramaniam, has been working at the intersection of health and biotechnology for two decades, armed with three chemistry degrees from the Indian Institute of Technology, Stanford University, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, respectively.
The first time founder was previously based in Baltimore, Maryland where he was initially a professor at John Hopkins University’s School of Medicine, then chief at the National Cancer Institute’s biophysics section. In 2003, he was appointed as senior investigator and chief of the National Institutes of Health: Intramural Research Program for the biophysics section, where he stayed for 15 years.
Don Kania, board chair at Gandeeva, was the CEO of FEI Company, a manufacturer of electron microscopes. Thermo Fisher acquired FEI Company in 2016 for $4.2 billion.
Kania’s prior board experience includes director roles at Leupold &Stevens, Inc., a family-owned sporting optics company; American Science & Engineering Inc (acquired by OSI in 2016); and Aldevron, a manufacturer of plasmid DNA for immunotherapy development and manufacturing.
With its new capital, Gandeeva intends to advance its AI-powered platform with the aim to accelerate the discovery, design, and development of novel precision medicines.