China’s vaccine developer MaxHealth Biotechnology raised the biggest private biotech investment in the Asia-Pacific region in July 2022, followed by China Immunotech and Ruibo Bio.
MaxHealth Biotechnology reigned supreme in the Asia-Pacific region’s private biotech investment sphere in July 2022, with a $74 million Series B round. The company will use the money to fuel the development of vaccines for infectious diseases including seasonal influenza, pandemic influenza, rabies and coronavirus.
China Immunotech came second with a $44 million Series B financing round to bankroll the development of cell therapies for cancer. In third place, compatriot firm Ruibo Bio bagged a neat $40 million to fund the development of drugs made from nucleic acids for the treatment of conditions in areas including liver disease, cardiovascular disease, metabolic disease and ophthalmology.
Chinese firms also dominated the biotech investment Series A round rankings in July 2022, with Phil Rivers Tech and NK Celltech leading the race with almost $15 million each. Phil Rivers Tech is using artificial intelligence (AI) to accelerate the development of cancer treatments. Meanwhile, NK Celltech is also targeting cancer, but in this case with a cell therapy based on a type of cancer-hunting immune cell called natural killer cells.
At the top of the seed round rankings was China’s Precision Autoimmune Therapeutics, which raised $20.9 million. The firm is working with CASI Pharmaceuticals in the U.S. to co-develop an antibody drug for the treatment of autoimmune diseases.
The Asia-Pacific region’s second seed round, a cool $10 million, went to China’s Theraxyte. Also known as Siluosai, the firm is developing ways to deliver drugs into patients by means of small nanocarriers called exosomes.
Outside of China, there were relatively few large biotech investments in July 2022. One highlight was a $20 million Series B round raised by India’s String Bio. The firm is developing a fermentation-based method to convert greenhouse gases into valuable products such as ingredients for agriculture and nutrition.
Another standout round of $23 million went to the Australian startup Infensa Bioscience. The firm will use the cash to treat strokes and heart attacks using venom from the K’gari (Fraser Island) funnel web spider.