Vienna-based biotech pioneer, HeartBeat.bio AG, has successfully concluded a pre-Series A funding round, raising an impressive €4.5 million. This latest investment is co-led by notable partners such as i&i Biotech Fund, Invest AG, aws Gründungsfonds II, and Tensor Ventures. The funds secured in this round are set to pave the way for the development of a cutting-edge, fully integrated, automated, and high-throughput Cardioid Drug Discovery Platform, poised to transform the landscape of drug discovery for conditions like drug-induced and genetic cardiomyopathies, myocardial infarction, and fibrosis, all of which present significant medical challenges.
HeartBeat.bio's innovative approach to cardiac drug discovery is fueled by the pressing need to find effective treatments for cardiovascular diseases. Such diseases are a leading cause of global mortality. The company, founded in 2021, is pioneering a shift away from traditional animal testing in early drug development. Instead, they are placing a strong emphasis on gaining a deeper understanding of human biology to enhance the drug development process. This approach encompasses target identification, disease modeling, candidate identification, and laboratory testing that accurately mimics real clinical trials.
The company's partnership with Molecular Devices is instrumental in this groundbreaking approach. HeartBeat.bio leverages its Cardioid technology, tailor-made for cardiac research, in conjunction with Molecular Devices' CellXpress.ai Automated Cell Culture System, a cutting-edge 3D biology innovation platform for growing cells in a lab setting. Advanced imaging and intelligent computer programs are also brought into play to expedite the drug discovery process.
The newly developed Cardioid Drug Discovery Platform holds the promise of revolutionizing drug development, with the potential to create pioneering medicines in a more efficient, cost-effective manner, and with a higher probability of success in real-world patient trials.
HeartBeat.bio's CEO, Michael Krebs, underscored the significance of this funding round, stating that it validates their Cardioid technology and positions the platform as a disruptor in the field of cardiac drug development. The company is gearing up for its Series A venture round scheduled for 2025, with the backing of four strategically aligned investors who possess the financial means to continue supporting their mission.
Tomas Maršálek, CFO of i&i Biotech Fund, noted that HeartBeat.bio's technology has the potential to bring about more effective drug development for cardiovascular diseases, with the added benefit of reducing the need for animal experiments, thereby carrying ethical importance.
Philipp Schupfer, Board Member of Invest AG, echoed this sentiment, emphasizing the innovative nature of HeartBeat.bio's proprietary Cardioid technology and its potential to reshape cardiovascular drug development. The unwavering support of Invest AG, Austria's leading Private Equity Fund, underscores their commitment to this pioneering Austrian biotech startup, marking a significant milestone in the field.