Rgenix Announces $33 Million Series B Financing to Develop First-in-Class Cancer Therapeutics
Novo A/S and Sofinnova Partners are leading this latest financing round
NEW YORK, New York ― June 15, 2016 ― Rgenix, a cancer therapeutics company developing first-in-class drugs targeting novel cancer pathways, announced a $33 million Series B financing led by Novo A/S and Sofinnova Partners, with participation from existing investors including Partnership Fund for New York City, Alexandria Venture Investments, and Conegliano Ventures LP. The financing will support clinical development of Rgenix’s lead drug candidates, RGX-104 and RGX-202, as well as further development of its therapeutics pipeline.
“We are thrilled to have attracted top-tier investors to advance development of our novel cancer therapeutics,” said Masoud Tavazoie, M.D. Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Rgenix. “This financing validates the potential of our lead immunotherapy RGX-104, which will be entering clinical trials this fall, and also demonstrates the strength of our discovery platform, developed in the laboratory of Rgenix co-founder Dr. Sohail Tavazoie at The Rockefeller University. The funding will enable our team to deliver an innovative therapy to cancer patients while simultaneously pushing forward our pipeline of other novel drug candidates.”
Antoine Papiernik, Managing Partner at Sofinnova Partners, commented: “We are very excited to back such a high quality team at Rgenix. We also believe that RGX-104 could revolutionize treatment to cancer patients that today lack effective therapies.”
Despite recent advances in cancer therapy, most patients will eventually succumb to their disease due to drug resistance and immune evasion. RGX-104 is a small molecule that reverses immune evasion and drug resistance by targeting immunosuppressive cells in the tumor microenvironment via a novel pathway, resulting in strong anti-tumor activity in several drug-resistant cancer types in pre-clinical models, both as a single agent and in combination with approved immunotherapies such as PD-1 inhibitors. The target of RGX-104 was discovered using Rgenix’s miRNA platform that has yielded several new cancer targets across multiple prevalent cancer types.
“We are excited to support Rgenix’s novel approach to treating cancers of high unmet need,” said Nilesh Kumar, Senior Principal of Novo Ventures*. “Rgenix has an exciting platform founded on strong science from The Rockefeller University; the lead program is a first in class opportunity addressing a key mechanism in tumor immunosuppression in various cancer types.”
In connection with the financing, Nilesh Kumar of Novo Ventures and Antoine Papiernik of Sofinnova Partners will join the Rgenix Board of Directors together with existing members, including Executive Chairman Eric Rowinsky, M.D., Masoud Tavazoie, M.D. Ph.D., Nancy Chang, Ph.D., and Saeed Tavazoie, Ph.D