Gosselies, Belgium, May 3, 2012 – iTeos Therapeutics SA, a drug discovery company focused on the development of immunomodulators for cancer therapy, today announced the successful closing of its Series A equity financing round.
iTeos, a joint spin-off of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research (LICR) and the de Duve Institute at the Université catholique de Louvain (UCL), raised €3.0 million from LICR, Hunza Ventures SCA, Life Sciences Research Partners, VIVES Louvain Technology Fund and several business angels. This financing complements a €6 million non-dilutive grant from the Belgian Walloon Government, which was received in December 2011.
Cancer immunotherapy has gained momentum in the two last years because of the clinical success of new immunotherapeutic treatments. Immunotherapy can harness the immune system to selectively destroy tumors and limit the risk of recurrences, with very limited side effects. However, the success of cancer immunotherapy has been limited by the ability of tumors to block the immune response, something known as immunosuppression. Scientists are now working to better understand the mechanisms responsible for immunosuppression, in order to devise strategies to overcome them.
This is what iTeos’ research program strives to do: develop small-molecule immunomodulators that can increase the efficacy of cancer immunotherapy, as well as leverage the spontaneous anti-tumor immune response.