Latvian-founded LongeVC joins $2.35M seed round for CatenaBio

LongeVC has joined a $2.35 million round for CatenaBio, a US-based biotech spin-out company of the labs of Prof. Jennifer Doudna and Prof. Matt Francis at UC Berkeley. California Innovation Fund, the US Civilization Ventures, and Pioneer Fund, Freeflow, and others participated in the round.

  • Founded in 2020 by Marco Lobba, Ph.D., Geo Guillen, and Matthew Francis and spun out of the laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley, CatenaBio has developed a platform, that allows the creation of novel biomolecules and further synthesizes them in any structure, combination, or orientation. Using naturally occurring amino acids, the startup’s technology allows coupling proteins to create novel therapeutics in autoimmune diseases, oncology, and vaccine development.
  • LongeVC is a venture company with offices in Riga and Lugano. It was established in 2016 by Garri Zmudze, Sergey Jakimov, and Ilya Suharenko. A €35 million fund supports biotech and longevity-focused startups at the early and seed stages across the US and Europe.

CatenaBio is rapidly escalating the effectiveness and usefulness of antibody-drug conjugates. ADCs are one of the most dynamic fields when it comes to fighting age-related diseases and are being actively explored across multiple vectors, including for oncology treatments,

Sergey Jakimov, founding partner at LongeVC, said.
  • The seed round was backed by existing investors California Innovation Fund, Civilization Ventures, and Pioneer Fund, and brought in new investors, Freeflow Ventures, Caffeinated Capital, and BrightEdge.

With the seed extension, Catena plans to accelerate development of its lead asset while launching scale-up activities with leading CROs and continuing efforts in support of its existing BD partnerships with Biotech and Pharma collaborators. The startup also aims to raise its next Series A later this year.