Startups, Venture

Seattle’s Nohla closes $45M to bring novel stem cell treatment for leukemia to late-stage trials

Seattle’s Nohla Therapeutics, a biotech startup spun out of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, has raised $45 million in new money to push forward its Phase II cell therapy for cord blood transplants.

The new Series B, backed in part by Celgene $CELG and Fidelity, brings the company’s total haul to $88.5 million since Nohla’s 2015 launch.

Colleen Delaney

The company is developing a cellular technology platform first invented by the company’s co-founder and CMO Colleen Delaney. First up, the startup is tackling a novel stem cell treatment for leukemia that uses cells from donated umbilical cord blood. It could be more effective than traditional bone marrow transplants.

Nohla’s lead product, NLA 101 (dilanubicel), is currently in Phase II trials in patients receiving cord blood transplants and those receiving high-dose chemotherapy.

The new cash will push the product candidate to the end of Phase II, and hopefully finance at least part of Phase II and commercial manufacturing needs, the company said.

Katie Fanning

“The financing announced today allows us to build on the progress we are making in advancing our lead clinical product, dilanubicel, toward potential regulatory approvals in multiple regions,” said Katie Fanning, Nohla’s president and CEO. “The additional funding will also fuel further research of our other off-the-shelf discovery programs in support of our mission to provide meaningful therapies to patients with significant unmet needs.”

Joining Fidelity Management and Research Company and Celgene, existing investors ARCH Venture Partners, 5AM Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments, and AML Biotech Partners participated in the round.


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