HIberCell Targets Forming Dormant Cancer Cells Before They Wake Up
Hibercell, a new biotech company, is focusing on killing off new but dormant cancer cells before they wake up and cause trouble.
Several of the biggest names in biotech venture capital are funding this company with an initial investment of $60 million dollars. HiberCell intends to develop therapies that target dormant cancer cells. Dormant cancer cells are malignant cancer cells that spread throughout the body even before a tumor is detectable with current machines and blood tests.
Finding and destroying these sleeping cancer cells prevents the cancer from starting, growing, and spreading. In many cases, cancers are detected when they have already progressed to Stage-Stage 4, and it’s too late to save the patient.
HiberCell will target both solid tumors, especially breast, prostate, and blood cancers. It also calls itself the first company exclusively focused on the detection and treatment of dormant tumor cells.
HiberCell: Going For The Cancer Cure
Hibercell based in New York, officially launched today with a $60.75 million Series A funding round, led by ARCH Venture Partners. Other investors are Celgene, Hillhouse Capital, 6 Dimensions Capital, the NYC Life Sciences Fund.
The company was founded based on research conducted at Mount Sinai’s Tisch Cancer Institute. Researchers showed that cancer is driven by dormant tumor cells that persist in the body for long periods of time. The company focus is to detect and kill dormant cells before they wake up.
Currently, HiberCell is testing two drugs. HC-5404 and HC-5407, are in preclinical discovery for solid tumors metastasis and recurrences of solid and liquid tumors.
To date, there has been research into dormant cancer cells. For example, a paper was published by scientists at the University of Sydney in Australia on ” Targeting Cancer Cell Dormancy.”
Another paper “Dormancy and Cancer stem cells: An enigma for cancer therapeutic targeting,” was published by researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University earlier this month.
The difference is that HiberCell is attempting to translate their research into the marketplace to bring a cure that focuses on detecting and killing cancer cells at their earliest stage. The earlier the detection, the better chances to survive.