Five years after getting started with a $32 million Series A, the crew at Allakos in San Carlos, CA are getting a $100 million mega-round to put their lead drug to the test.
New Enterprise Associates led the round for the low profile biotech with a big syndicate that includes Redmile Group, Partner Fund Management, Rock Springs Capital, LifeSci Venture Partners, Samsara BioCapital, and “a large institutional investor,” as well as existing investors Alta Partners, RiverVest Venture Partners, Roche Venture Fund, and 3X5 Partners.
The lead drug targets the inhibitory receptor Siglec-8, found on the surface of mast cells and eosinophils. And Allakos believes it has real potential in a broad range of indications, including eosinophilic gastritis, indolent systemic mastocytosis, urticaria and severe allergic conjunctivitis.
Last summer the biotech recruited a pair of ZS Pharma vets — Robert Alexander and Adam Tomasi — to take over as CEO and COO/CFO. AstraZeneca acquired ZS for $2.7 billion.
Allakos specializes in studying the dysregulation of the T-helper type 2 (Th2) immune response.
“Allakos’s highly differentiated approach has the potential to deliver first-in-class treatments for serious illnesses affecting both large and rare disease populations,” said NEA partner Paul Walker in a statement.
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