Mersana Therapeutics raises $27m

Mersana Therapeutics Inc., a Cambridge biopharmaceutical company, said Tuesday that it has closed a $27 million Series A-1 financing led by new investor New Enterprise Associates.

Participation in the round also included new investor Pfizer Venture Investments and existing investors Fidelity Biosciences, ProQuest Investments, Rho Ventures, and Harris+Harris Group, the company said. New Enterprise Associates general partner David Mott will become chairman of Mersana’s board of directors, and Sara Nayeem, a principal at New Enterprise Associates, will become a director.

Mersana is developing an antibody-drug conjugate platform that is designed for the delivery of drugs that can be used for oncology treatments; these conjugates can be loaded with a drug payload that is released once inside a targeted cancer cell.

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“Using antibodies and other targeting agents to deliver potent drugs to the site of tumors and disease while avoiding off-target toxicities has long been pursued almost as a holy grail in the biopharmaceutical industry,” Mott said in a statement.