Vancouver’s Gandeeva Therapeutics has raised USD $40 million in Series A funding to advance the development of new drug treatments.
Led by UBC Faculty of Medicine professor Dr. Sriram Subramaniam and founded in 2021, Gandeeva is accelerating the development of new precision medicines by integrating cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and artificial intelligence (AI).
Cryo-EM is a rapidly growing field that has sparked an imaging revolution.
The technology is capable of taking pictures at near-atomic resolution, allowing scientists to determine the structure of complex biological molecules as they interact. To produce the images, samples are ultra-cooled to almost -200 C before being shot with beams of electrons from multiple angles.
Dr. Subramaniam and his team are combining this high-resolution imagery with a suite of machine learning tools to visualize protein-drug interactions and speed up drug discovery.
“For decades, we have known that understanding the language by which proteins are folded and function is fundamental to deciphering biology. Altered protein function is implicated in nearly every disease,” said Dr. Subramaniam, who holds the Gobind Khorana Canada Excellence Research Chair in Cancer Drug Design at UBC.
“Gandeeva endeavors to unlock these mysteries by moving beyond recent developments in cryo-EM technology and in AI-driven approaches to structural biology by integrating these technologies in its pioneering platform.”
Dr. Subramaniam is recognized as a global leader in the field of cryo-electron microscopy. Before joining UBC in 2018, he spent over 15 years at the US National Cancer Institute (NCI) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), where he was founding director of the National Cryo-EM Facility.
Now, he’s leading UBC’s Program in Cryo-EM Guided Drug Design with an aim to position UBC and Canada at the forefront of the emerging era of precision medicine.