Chinese biotech startup Ark Biosciences closes series A extension led by Bioventure Investment

Shanghai-based biotech startup Ark Biosciences has recently raised an undisclosed amount in a Series A+ funding round led by Bioventure Investment Management, a Chinese medical and pharmaceutical-focused venture capital.

The startup focusing on innovative drug discovery and development especially in the respiratory viruses, influenza, and Hepatitis B field for worldwide markets current financing round also received participation by existing investors Qiming Venture Partners, Morningside Venture Capital, and Oriza Capital.

“Bioventure is focusing on investments in innovative drugs which are driven by clinical requirements,” said Chen Jie, a partner at Bioventure. “Ark Biosciences is very experienced in the antiviral drugs field, and I believe the company will bring innovative products for respiratory syncytial virus.”

Founded in 2003 by Dr. Jim Wu, Ark Bioscience at present develops an AK0529 drug targeting respiratory viruses, an AK0612 drug targeting influenza, as well as an AK0701 drug and two other projects targeting the Hepatitis B virus.

Last week, the company announced that its AK0529 drug which targets respiratory viruses has gained approval from the China Food and Drug Administration, allowing the biotech startup to commence their clinical trials.

With the latest proceedings, the company will support the phase II study of AK0592, as well as clinical trials of other drugs in its pipeline. The AK0529 drug completed its phase I clinical trial in Australia in 2015 and is in the phase II trial of Viral Inhibition in Children for Treatment Of RSV.

Suzhou-based Bioventure Investment was founded in 2013 by Chen Jie, former managing director at CXC Capital. The company currently has RMB2 billion (about US$280 million) under management. It has made over 30 investments in companies in China and U.S. including Chiral Quest, BrightGene, Suzhou Kintor Pharmaceutical Inc. and PegBio Co. Ltd.

By Vivian Foo, Unicorn Media

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