Montana biotech company receives Small Business Innovation Research Grant to develop novel treatments against infectious diseases.
Inimmune Corporation, a biotechnology company located in Missoula, MT, was recently awarded $1,017,317 from the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) under its Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II program to advance a new immunotherapeutic for the prevention of respiratory infectious diseases.
The lead researcher and Principle Investigator on this award, Dr. Juhienah Khalaf, is an Investigator and medicinal chemist at Inimmune. Last year through a SBIR Phase I grant, Dr. Khalaf and Inimmune successfully established proof-of-principle that Inimmune’s new class of immunotherapeutics are safe and effective for the treatment of upper respiratory tract infections. In this current Phase II award, Inimmune will further develop this new class of immunotherapeutics as treatment for seasonal or pandemic influenza viruses as well as other respiratory pathogens of significant medical concern.
“This award exemplifies the tireless efforts of the team at Inimmune and our continued dedication to discover and develop novel immunotherapies for the treatment of allergy, infectious disease and cancer,” stated Jay Evans, Inimmune co-founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer. “The current Phase II SBIR award will be used to advance the high-quality research at Inimmune and could help change the tide on the growing burden of existing and emerging infectious diseases”
“The SBIR process is highly competitive and the National Institute Health’s interest in continuing funding this program is an important validation of the therapeutic potential of our program” said Dr. Hélène Bazin-Lee, Inimmune co-founder, Vice President of Early Discovery and leader of these early efforts. “This award has the potential to develop a new broad-spectrum immunomodulator that would provide non-specific protection against a wide range of biological pathogens, and is primarily targeted for preventing upper respiratory tract infections in individuals or populations at risk for emerging or opportunistic pathogen exposure.”
Inimmune was co-founded in 2016 by four pharmaceutical industry experts and an experienced team of researchers with the aim to harness the human immune system and create next generation immunotherapeutics. The team spent more than 20 years together working in Hamilton, MT prior to forming Inimmune in Missoula, MT. Their laboratories and offices are housed in the Montana Technology Enterprise Center (MonTEC) and they work in close collaboration with researchers at the University of Montana’s Center for Translational Medicine to form a unique public-private partnership to foster innovation and retain high tech Montana jobs.
For more information about Inimmune please visit or contact Dr. Juhienah Khalaf at