Kala Pharmaceuticals, co-launched by MIT's Langer, snags $6.2M

Kudos to Kala Pharmaceuticals. The early-stage developer of treatments designed to reach mucosal organs is the latest of many startups launched or co-founded by legendary MIT professor Robert Langer, and it just brought in an additional $6.2 million in equity financing to help carry various preclinical programs to human clinical trials.

The Waltham, MA, startup wants to create better treatments for mucosal tissues. (This includes the respiratory tract, eyes, gastrointestinal tract and female reproductive organs.) Co-founder Justin Hanes of The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine developed some of the core intellectual property.

Using Kala's central mucus penetrating particle technology, Kala explains its technology is designed to form the basis of treatments that rapidly pass through mucus secretions carrying biocompatible drug-loaded particles to their targets, uniformly coating the mucosal surface in a sustained dose. Plans call for developing proprietary drugs but also working with "select partners," although the company's announcement doesn't identify who they are.

Total seed financing has now reached $11.2 million. Existing investors Lux Capital, Polaris Venture Partners, Third Rock Ventures and Lighthouse Capital Partners participated in the new funding.

- here's the release