Kancera's roots lie both in the research on cancer and stem cells by the Karolinska Institute, and in Pharmacia and, later, Biovitrum's industrial tradition.
In 2006, Biovitrum's unit for the early development of small molecule drug candidates was hived off to create iNovacia AB. The company has since then delivered more than thirty development projects, commissioned by pharmaceutical companies both in Europe and the United States.
This has further sharpened the company's technical and strategic skills in terms of the ability to convert important biological and clinical discoveries into drug candidates with major potential.
In 2008, iNovacia decided to begin development of its own pharmaceutical preparations. At the same time, a partnership was started with the Karolinska Institute's cancer research centre (CCK); later, a partnership was also initiated with Sprint Bioscience AB, a company located at the Karolinska Institute that focuses on technologies (structural biology) for accelerated pharmaceutical development.
With these partnerships, industrial and clinical expertises were united in the development of the next generation of cancer drugs.
In May 2010, Kancera AB was formed from Sprint Bioscience AB, Håkan Mellstedt and iNovacia. This was achieved by contribution-in-kind of cancer drug projects that had been developed individually and jointly since 2003.
During spring 2011, Kancera will be further strengthened by the acquisition of iNovacia. The acquisition will secure access to iNovacia's pharmaceutical laboratory, thus providing Kancera with an internationally validated product development capacity.