With $28.7 million from a recently-closed Series C round, Lumicell reported today that it plans to launch a pivotal trial of its image-guided cancer surgery tech in breast cancer.
The Wellesley, Mass.-based company added that it hopes to expand its clinical program into other solid tumor cancers, including lung, ovarian and brain cancer.
The company’s Lum system is currently being studied in patients with breast cancer, prostate cancer, colorectal, esophageal and pancreatic cancers.
The drug-device product combines a fluorescent optical contrast agent with a hand-held imaging device that scans cavity walls to detect leftover cancer cells. The Lum system also includes decision software that displays the image in real-time on a monitor, guiding the surgeon to remove cancerous tissue. The company is positioning its technology as a way to boost outcomes and cut costs by reducing the number of repeat surgeries.
“We are grateful for the funding and support from our investors which will be used to drive completion of our breast cancer studies as well as expand the Lum system pipeline into additional cancer indications, with a focus on driving innovation to improve patient outcomes,” CEO Kelly Londy said in prepared remarks. “We look forward to several key development milestones, over the next year, as our platform moves into the next stages and our company grows.”
Existing and new investors participated in the company’s recent Series C round, including Launch Capital and BlueIO.
“We are pleased to support Lumicell in its drive toward providing cancer surgeons with a single integrated system to detect and remove cancer cells in real-time during surgery and potentially reducing the need for repeat surgeries,” Launch Capital’s founder & chairman Elon Boms said.
“The clinical applications for the Lum system are far-reaching and we look forward to working with the Lumicell team to expand this potential game-changing advance in cancer surgery and beyond with their innovative platform. We are very proud to be involved in supporting Lumicell’s immediate go to market growth phase as they work to advance clinical care for all cancer patients,” Dave Furneaux, CEO of BlueIO and managing general partner of Kodiak Venture Partners, added.
Also today, Lumicell touted data from a Phase II trial showing that the Lum system could detect all breast cancer sub-types in patients undergoing lumpectomy surgery. The technology correctly identified residual cancer within the tumor cavity in all 45 of the trial’s participants, the company reported.
“Currently, up to 40% of breast cancer lumpectomy patients have positive margins that require surgical re-excision,” Dr. Barbara Smith, director of the Breast Program at Massachusetts General Hospital and professor of surgery at Harvard Medical School, said in prepared remarks. “By providing instantaneous identification of residual tumor in the lumpectomy cavity, the Lum system has the potential to provide surgeons with enhanced information to improve care for their breast cancer patients.”