We are delighted to share with you that  WuXi Corporate Venture Fund has contributed to a $6.85 million Series B round financing of Avelas Biosciences, Inc., a San Diego-based biotech that is developing an innovative cancer imaging approach.

Avelas is advancing a lead development candidate, AVB-620, from its Avelas Cancer Illuminator (ACI) platform – a technology founded by Nobel Prize-winning scientist Roger Tsien, Ph.D.  ACI superimposes a color-coded image of the cancerous tissue over the normal surgical view, giving the surgeon a detailed map of the tumor.

Avelas’ development candidate, AVB-620, is a fluorescent peptide that provides surgeons a real-time intraoperative map of a patient’s cancer.  Having this information available instantly could end the need to wait for results of pathology reports, potentially improving patient treatment by helping surgeons to act sooner and avoid repeated surgeries.  In preclinical in vivo testing AVB-620 was more than 95% accurate. Avelas is due to start clinical trials of AVB-620 later this year.

WuXi is proud to support such an innovative company that has the potential to make a real difference to patients and looks forward to positive results from the upcoming clinical trial.

To date, WuXi Corporate Venture Fund’s portfolio investments include Agios, Callidus Biopharma, Foundation Medicine, Novira Pharmaceuticals, and Syros Pharmaceuticals.