NeoPhore Limited, a small molecule neoantigen immuno-oncology company, today announces the completion of its £21.5m (US $28.5m) Series B financing, with a £6m (US $7.5m) financing extension. The syndicate comprised its Series B subscribing investors including CRT Pioneer Fund, Claris Ventures, 2Invest, 3B Future Health Fund and Astellas Venture Management.
NeoPhore is focused on the discovery and development of novel first-in-class small molecule drugs targeting the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) pathway to treat cancer. The additional funding will be used to progress NeoPhore’s expanding pipeline of drugs, encompassing multiple biological targets and modalities of treatment, to the start of IND-enabling studies in 2024.
Dr Robert James, Chairman of NeoPhore, said: “This additional support from NeoPhore’s existing investors is a strong testament to the Company’s novel and differentiated immunotherapy approach. We believe that by altering the tumour genotype to elicit immunological responses, we can offer huge clinical benefit in the level and durability of anti-tumour responses in a wide range of indications for the benefit of cancer patients. 2022 was a year of remarkable progress for NeoPhore in which it demonstrated, for the first time that we are aware of, a number of exciting therapeutic consequences of inhibiting mismatch repair with a small molecule.”
In January 2022, NeoPhore achieved all of its investment related scientific milestones significantly ahead of schedule. In February 2022, NeoPhore expanded its research partnership with St George’s, University of London after a successful collaboration investigating novel cancer immunotherapies, and in July 2022, the Company entered a three-year research collaboration agreement with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) to further validate the potential of NeoPhore’s proprietary DNA mismatch repair inhibitor (MMRi) compounds to enhance tumour immunogenicity and induce tumour immunity.
Dr Matthew Baker, Chief Executive Officer of NeoPhore, added: “2022 was a year of progress for NeoPhore. Collaborating with such prominent leaders in the field allowed us to advance our goal of developing next-generation immuno-oncology therapeutics. It is known that drugs designed to spark cancer neoantigen creation and subsequently stimulate the immune system, can improve outcomes for patients who do not benefit from the current generation of cancer immunotherapies. We welcome the continued support from our investors that enables us to further develop our drug discovery pipeline.”
NeoPhore, UK is focused on the discovery and development of novel small molecule therapies to treat cancer through stimulation of the immune system. Generation of cancer neoantigens in tumours can be exploited by the patients’ immune system to overcome natural defence mechanisms in cancer. The Company’s approach targets the DNA mismatch repair (MMR) pathway, which has been proven to promote neoantigen creation and subsequent immunity against numerous cancers. Using these insights, NeoPhore aims to generate next-generation immuno-oncology therapeutics to improve clinical outcomes for cancer patients. NeoPhore was spun-out of the University of Turin and PhoreMost Ltd by the CRT Pioneer Fund. For more information, please visit www.neophore.com
About Sixth Element Capital LLP and the CRT Pioneer Fund
Sixth Element Capital LLP (6EC) is a UK based fund manager, which manages the CRT Pioneer Fund. 6EC’s experienced partners focus on creative and collaborative novel financing solutions designed to fund and manage innovative science in order to bring new therapeutic products and technologies to market, creating long term value and benefit to stakeholders. The CRT Pioneer Fund is a specialist oncology investment fund established by 6EC in 2012. The £70 million fund is dedicated to investments in oncology development programmes in Europe. The fund was established to bridge the investment gap between cancer drug discovery and early clinical development.
For more information, please see www.sixthelementcapital.com
About Claris Ventures
Claris Ventures is a biotech-focused venture capital firm based in Turin (Italy). Its first fund under management, Claris Biotech I, was launched in 2020 to finance high potential biopharma companies arisen from the Italian R&D ecosystem – both local and international. We identify and support innovation in the pharmaceutical space, investing in new companies with transformational drugs under development. We aim at the highest impact possible on highly unmet patients’ needs, building value around strong science. Our pursuit for high potential projects involves every research center, clinical structure and company in the Italian life sciences network, whether the founding team is based in Italy or it includes Italian scientists abroad who have strong links with Italy.
About 3B Future Health Fund S.A. SICAR, formerly known as Helsinn Investment Fund S.A., SICAR
3B Future Health Fund is focused on investments in areas of high unmet patient need and aims to help companies with innovative technologies to transform new ideas into commercial solutions with the potential to impact health-related quality of life of patients. The Fund selects companies with technologies in a range of areas including cancer therapeutics and diagnostics, cancer supportive care, metabolic and gastrointestinal disorders, and dermatology conditions. For more information, please visit : https://3bfuturehealth.com/
About Astellas Venture Management LLC
Astellas Venture Management LLC (AVM) is the corporate venture capital organization dedicated to reinforcing Astellas Pharma Inc. (Astellas) to accomplish the strategic goals. The venture capital activity of AVM is designated since 2005. Astellas, the ultimate parent company of AVM, headquartered in Tokyo is actively engaged in business as an R&D-driven global pharmaceutical company with the business philosophy to “Contribute toward improving the health of people around the world through the provision of innovative and reliable pharmaceutical products”. Through strategic investments in private early-stage companies, the funds aim to mutual-interact with Astellas, leading to partnering/collaboration in the future. AVM will be able to provide portfolio companies with invaluable R&D advice and assistance.
2Invest AG (2Invest) is an investment company listed on Frankfurt market formed in 2020 from the restructuring of businesses of 4basebio AG. Our investment objective is primarily but not exclusively to identify and support emerging companies with both strong management teams and ground-breaking technologies in the biotechnology, life sciences and IT sectors. Our ambition is to enable those companies to reach new and meaningful value inflexion points.