Bionova Capital invests in Vaxdyn to develop a new vaccine against deadly bacteria

Vaxdyn is developing a new vaccine to fight the global superbug crisis.
Bionova Capital continues investing in life-saving drugs amidst COVID-19 pandemic.

Lisbon, Portugal – 08 March 2021 – Bionova Capital, a leading venture capital firm investing in and building disruptive life science companies across Europe, announced today a new € 300,000 investment in Vaxdyn, a Spanish biotech developing a novel vaccine to prevent deadly antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections, including pneumonia.

This vaccine is being developed to prevent infections caused by bacteria classified by the World Health Organization as the most dangerous for human health: Acinetobacter baumannii, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Worryingly, no vaccines have been developed for these bacteria, and currently there are no candidates in clinical development. Antibiotic-resistant bacteria could be the cause of the next pandemic as already more than 700,000 people die every year from antibiotic-resistant infections. If treatments against bacteria continue to be insufficient, 300 million people worldwide are expected to die prematurely from now until 2050, surpassing cancer as the main global killer.

"We are determined to develop a vaccine that will prevent deadly infections caused by drug-resistant bacteria, providing safe and effective immunity”, said Juanjo Infante, CEO, Vaxdyn. "We welcome Bionova Capital to our company. Bionova Capital’s track record and experience in supporting the development of early-stage biotech companies across Europe makes them the ideal partner to develop this much-needed vaccine”.

Bionova Capital is co-investing in Vaxdyn together with CARB-X, a $500 million consortium funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), and the Wellcome Trust, among others. CARB-X is awarding up to $7.3 million in non-dilutive funding to Vaxdyn, and together with the investment from Bionova Capital and others, this company will be able to complete the pre-clinical development of this vaccine and conduct a first-in-human study. Other investors in this round include Laboratorios Reig Jofré (a pharma company listed on the Spanish Stock Exchange), Arquimea Group (a cross sectoral international technology group), and Mind the Gap (an impact investment vehicle led by the Botín Foundation to support biotech startups).

"The COVID-19 pandemic showed that we need to start investing ahead of future outbreaks, and antimicrobial resistance is already taking thousands of people's lives, both in developed and developing countries”, said Peter Villax, Chairman, Bionova Capital. "If successful, this vaccine will be one of the most important weapons against bacterial pneumonia”.

"We were impressed by the company’s promising preliminary results, which showed that this vaccine has the potential to be a much-needed solution to fight the global superbug crisis”, said Ricardo Perdigão Henriques, CEO, Bionova Capital. "Vaxdyn is our second biotech investment in Europe and the sixth company in our portfolio. Given the exceptional quality of the biomedical research in this region, additional investments will certainly follow”.

About Vaxdyn

Vaxdyn is a biotech company dedicated to preventing life-threatening bacterial infections. Headquartered in Spain, Vaxdyn works with an international network of collaborators in the development of multi-valent vaccines for preventing infections in patients affected by chronic lung, liver or kidney diseases, immunocompromised patients with diabetes or cancer, and people under care at nursing homes and hospital settings.

More information:
Juanjo Infante - CEO

About Bionova Capital

Bionova Capital is a healthcare-focused venture capital firm, investing in early-stage life science companies. Founded in 2015, Bionova Capital actively manages a portfolio of five companies, two in the UK and three in Portugal. Bionova Capital invests in groundbreaking therapeutics, medtech and digital health startups across Europe.

More information:
Ricardo Perdigão Henriques - CEO