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Unum Therapeutics, a cellular immunotherapy company, launches with $12m

Unum Therapeutics announced its launch Tuesday with $12 million in funding led by Fidelity Biosciences and Atlas Venture, with participation from Sanofi-Genzyme BioVentures.

In a press release, Cambridge-based Unum Therapeutics described its mission as using proprietary T-cell engineering technology in combination with tumor-targeting antibodies to activate the body’s own immune system to fight cancer.

Industry veteran Charles “Chuck” Wilson is Unum Therapeutics president and chief executive. Dario Campana, MD, a specialist in cancer cell therapies, is the company’s scientific founder.

In a statement, Wilson said, “We’ve created Unum to rapidly develop this universal cell therapy platform and to explore its potential in a number of different cancer types.”

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Fidelity Biosciences is a subsidiary of FMR LLC, the parent company of Fidelity Investments, the Boston-based financial-services company.

Atlas Venture is a venture capital firm based in Cambridge.

Sanofi-Genzyme BioVentures invests in early stage companies developing promising new products that align with Sanofi SA’s current and future areas of business interest such as rare diseases, oncology, vaccines, immune-mediated diseases, and other therapies.

In 2011, the French drug gian Sanofi bought Genzyme, one of the largest biotechnology companies in Massachusetts, for $20.1 billion.


Chris Reidy can be reached at reidy@globe.com.