Kyverna CAR-T pipeline boosted by $145m funding

Backed by new investors, Kyverna Therapeutics has extended its Series B funding round to support clinical development of its CAR-T therapies.

Millie Nelson, Editor

August 8, 2023

3 Min Read
Kyverna CAR-T pipeline boosted by $145m funding

Backed by new investors, Kyverna Therapeutics has extended its Series B funding round to support clinical development of its CAR-T therapies.  

Kyverna, a clinical-stage therapy firm focused on producing therapies for autoimmune diseases, has closed a $60 million Series B financing round extension, bringing the total of this round to $145 million. Kyverna closed the first round of its Series B funding in January 2022. Existing investors have been joined by Bain Capital Life Sciences and GordonMD Global Investments.

“Kyverna’s existing investor syndicate is very excited about the recent progress that we are making,” Peter Maag, Kyverna’s CEO, told BioProcess Insider. “There is a lot of activity in autoimmune disease and Kyverna has the potential to provide a first-in-class/best-in-class autologous product for patients in autoimmune disease.”



According to the firm, the funding will support clinical advancement of fully human anti-CD19 chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapies for autoimmune diseases. The company’s anti-CD19 CAR T-cell therapies KYV-101 and KYV-201 target CD19, a protein found on the surface of B cells associated with various types of autoimmune diseases including lupus nephritis. 

“On the heels of first clinical data of our lead product KYV-101, we are quickly expanding our clinical trial activity,” Maag explained. “The opportunity in autoimmune disease is vast with many patients in multiple indications potentially benefiting from the approach. 

“Our clinical trial program is quickly expanding, and our resources will go toward the goal of dosing more patients. Initially, in our regulatory trial program we focus on lupus nephritis, and there are large patient populations in rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, scleroderma, and many more that could benefit from this approach.” 

 KYV-101 is manufactured from a patient’s own cells, which undergo a process that uses a non-infectious viral vector to introduce the genetic sequence of the chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) into the cells. 

According to Maag, these receptors allow the cell to bind to the bad antibody producing B-cells and depletes them. “In our manufacturing process, the cells culture for about a week, are then collected as a product for administration. Our quality process takes as long as the manufacturing process, ensuring that every single product meets our stringent quality standards. The product is then shipped to the clinic for infusion into the patient. All along the way checks are made that confirm the right cells get to the right patient.” 

With the added funding, Kyverna is expanding, with Maag saying it is on track to double the organization by year end to 100 full-time employees. 

It will also allow Kyverna to expand on previous work in the CAR-T space, he continued. “We are deploying a smart strategy by harvesting the years (and millions of dollars) that went into CAR T-cell development and manufacturing before us. 

“The learnings from oncology applied now to autoimmune disease give us a great jump off point. But then, autoimmune patients are very different. Our strategy is to add the best-of-the-best solutions into a coherent product offering and be smart and capital-expenditure light.” 

About the Author(s)

Millie Nelson

Editor, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering global biopharmaceutical manufacturing and processing news and host of the Voices of Biotech podcast.

I am currently living and working in London but I grew up in Lincolnshire (UK) and studied in Newcastle (UK).

Got a story? Feel free to email me at [email protected]

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