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Founder: Dr. John Hadden
VC Investment over the last four quarters: $25 million
IRX Therapeutics is a 40-employee biotech firm developing drugs to restore immune system function, particularly in patients with head and neck cancer. Founded over a decade ago and backed by more than $60 million raised mostly from high-net-worth individuals, the company has reduced headcount by a third and delayed some clinical trials planned for 2009, according to Chief Financial Officer Jeffrey Hwang.
Key to startup success: "In normal times where the capital is available, the difference maker among people with good ideas is sharp execution. There's never a substitute for the ability to attract and retain experienced, qualified people to take advantage of the discovery you've made."