San Diego Business Journal

Avelas Closes $6.85M Series B Financing Round, Names New CEO

By Meghana Keshavan Thursday, January 9, 2014

Avelas Biosciences Inc. announced it closed on a $6.85 million Series B financing round, and has also promoted chief business officer Carmine Stengone to the role of CEO.

The financing was led by the company’s founding investor, Avalon Ventures, as well as new investors Torrey Pines Investment, WuXi AppTec and an additional unnamed investor.

Stengone will replace Jay Lichter as CEO of Avelas. Lichter, a managing partner at Avalon Ventures, will join the company’s board.

Avelas, founded in 2009, is developing a fluorescent cancer imaging tool called the Avelas Cancer Illuminator, or AVB-620. The device’s aim is to allow surgeons to detect cancerous tissues while patients are still on the operating table, allowing for greater surgical accuracy that could result in fewer followup operations.

The technology comes from research from Nobel Prize-winning scientist Roger Tsien, a biochemistry professor at University of California, San Diego. The company received a Series A round of financing in December 2012 for $7.65 million.