Allakos Inc. Raises Additional $10 Million to Expand its Portfolio and Fund Development of an Additional Antibody for Allergic and Inflammatory Diseases
San Carlos, CA – September 30, 2014 – Allakos Inc. announced today that it has secured an additional $10 million investment from current investors to fund development of an additional therapeutic antibody. The additional financing was completed following achievement of a key, pre-specified milestone related to the company’s lead antibody program, and represents an extension of the company’s Series A preferred stock financing, which closed in December 2012. With this additional financing, Allakos has raised a total of $42 million in the Series A round. All of the company’s current investors participated in this additional financing, including Novo Ventures, Alta Partners, RiverVest Venture Partners and the Roche Venture Fund. “We are pleased to report that we have demonstrated that our lead antibody shows activity in preclinical models and directly affects multiple key cell types involved in inflammation,” said Nenad Tomasevic, Allakos Co-founder and Vice President, Research. “We appreciate the continued confidence placed in our company by our Series A investors,” said Christopher Bebbington, Allakos Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer. “Following the successful achievement of a key preclinical milestone with our lead program, we are excited to advance another promising antibody into formal preclinical development. These two antibodies form a robust platform that can support clinical development in multiple diseases. Our therapeutic antibodies are designed to work through novel mechanisms of action, to have significant safety and efficacy advantages and to have potential in multiple, high-value markets, including large established indications as well as orphan diseases. The additional funding will enable us to advance two programs towards meaningful near-term milestones.” Peter Moldt, PhD., Partner at Novo Ventures and Chairman of the Allakos board of directors, said: “We believe that Allakos’ innovative approach to developing antibody-based therapeutics represents a large and important therapeutic and commercial opportunity. We are delighted with the continued progress of the company and expansion of its development portfolio.”
Chief Medical Officer Appointed
Allakos also announced the appointment of Alejandro Dorenbaum, MD, as Chief Medical Officer. “We are delighted to welcome Alejandro to the Allakos team to lead our clinical development program and advance our growing pipeline of differentiated antibody therapeutics,” said Dr. Bebbington. “His broad clinical development expertise will be a valuable asset to our company.” Dr. Dorenbaum received his training in medicine at The National Autonomous University in Mexico City, and his pediatric and allergy immunology training at the University of Texas Health Science Center and at Baylor College of Medicine, respectively. Dr. Dorenbaum joined the faculty of the University of California in San Francisco where he was responsible for a program devoted to clinical research and the care of women and children with HIV infection. Dr. Dorenbaum subsequently worked at Chiron Corporation where he held positions in several areas of drug development, including biologics, small molecules and vaccines. At BioMarin Pharmaceutical, Inc., he was responsible for the clinical development of Kuvan®, and at Genentech, he was responsible for the respiratory programs in asthma and cystic fibrosis. Dr. Dorenbaum also served as Chief Medical Ofh3ficer at Lumena Pharmaceutical until its acquisition by Shire. He maintains an active academic position as Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at Stanford University School of Medicine where he treats patients with allergy and immunological issues.