Locus Biosciences, a biotechnology company focused on the development of antimicrobials, has raised $19 million in Series A funding.
A majority of the funding was contributed by ARTIS Ventures, a financial institution that supporting technological entrepreneurs. Additional financing came from Chinese internet conglomerate Tencent Holding Ltd. and institutional investor Abstract Ventures.
According to a press release, the Series A financing will fund the company through filing its first investigational new drug application with the Food and Drug Administration, as well as a subsequent human trial.
“The possibilities with the CRISPR revolution inside biotech are limitless, and not just tied to the human genome,” said Stuart Peterson, president of ARTIS Ventures, in a statement. “The potential behind what Locus is working on is exactly the type of innovation that we have built our investment portfolio around and we are confident that Locus is making great progress on removing deadly pathogens from the human body.”
Locus, a 2015 spinout of N.C. State University, was started with the help of a $75,000 loan from the Biotechnology Center. NCBiotech followed that with a $250,000 Small Business Research Loan a year later.
This past October, the company raised $7 million in equity, according to a filing.
The company’s platform enables the design and development of powerful antimicrobials that avoid currently known antibiotic resistance mechanisms while leaving non-target bacteria unharmed. Built on prokaryotic technology, Locus is advancing its platform to create treatment for critical disease areas ranging from resistant bacterial infections to the microbiome.
Companies relying on a Reg D exemption do not have to register their offering of securities with the SEC, but they must file what’s known as a Form D electronically with the SEC after they first sell their securities.