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Chinese Startup Genor Biopharma Secures USD 160 Mn from Hillhouse and Temasek
COVID-19 and China
The biotechnology is decoding human cells. Image credit: National Cancer Institute/Unsplash

► Genor plans to launch several PD-1 anti-cancer medicines this year.

► Hillhouse Capital's three investments in 2020 have only focused on innovative pharmaceuticals so far.

Genor Biopharma just closed a Series B funding of USD 160 million, an investment led by Hillhouse and new investors, including Temasek and Life Science Fund, Kaiyuan International and Cavenham PE. This bankroll is set to support and promote the current product pipelines, research and development at the early stages of drugs, potential cross-border strategic cooperation and commercialization for late-stage products.

Founded in December 2007, Genor Biopharma aims to develop affordable oncological medicines for cancer patients. This innovation-oriented startup now has developed over ten products in its research pipeline, including ten that were led to the clinical development stage. This international startup has established a cross-border network, consisting of three offices in China (Shanghai, Yunnan and Beijing) and one industry base in South San Francisco.

Before this capital injection, it received four rounds from both financial institutions, including Yingke PE, Sunshine Insurance Group and pharmaceutical companies such as the vaccine maker Walvax.

Now boasting an 80% tally of research scientists from a total of over 400 employees, this biotech startup has achieved the launches of a series of products. According to Genor, three products have moved to Phase 3, and the most exciting pivotal PD-1 drugs are in Phase 2. 

Genor’s Geptanolimab, or ‘GB226,’ is a kind of monoclonal antibody that targets immune cells. It can recover the immune system’s capability to identify and kill cancer cells. In the 2020 annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), M.D. Yuan-kai Shi from the company gave the clinical test report about the efficacy and safety of Geptanolimab (GB226) in patients with relapsed/refectory Peripheral T Cell Lymphoma (PTCL). 

“The year 2020 is a significant year for Genor Biopharma,” says Dr. Guo Feng, the CEO of the company, “we are in the final sprint to push those mature medicines to hit the market, meanwhile accelerating the R&D process in oncological immunotherapy.”

Hillhouse Capital, well-known for its investment portfolios in healthcare and biotechnology, indicates a continuous positive attitude for the Chinese healthcare market, especially the anti-cancer field. This deal is the third investment this year for the capital giant, the first two being USD 100 million in Transcenta Holding and CNY 2.3 billion in Asymchem Laboratories. All three investees are chemical, biotech and innovative drug providers.

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