AsclepiX Therapeutics Announces $35 Million Series A Financing

Source: AsclepiX Therapeutics

AsclepiX Therapeutics announced that it has closed a $35 million Series A financing to fund phase 1/2a clinical trials of AXT107, the company’s lead investigational drug, for the treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME), wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and macular edema secondary to retinal vein occlusion (RVO). AXT107 has a dual mechanism of action targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and Tie2 and has preclinically shown long durability and unique drug delivery properties that may offer an improved treatment option for patients.

The funding led by Perceptive Xontogeny Venture Fund (PXV Fund) with participation from the Perceptive Life Sciences Fund, both funds managed by Perceptive Advisors, and existing investors Rapha Capital Management and Barer & Son Capital.

“We are excited to welcome Perceptive Advisors and their PXV Fund in leading this financing and look forward to benefiting from their deep expertise and track record in identifying promising new therapeutics in which to invest,” Steven M. Altschuler, MD, Chair of the AsclepiX Board and former Chairman and co-founder of Spark Therapeutics, said in a company news release. “This investment represents a watershed moment for AsclepiX and provides transformative support for our vision to revolutionize the therapy of retinal disease and ultimately apply our computational technology platform to the discovery of novel clinically active molecules.”

Currently available therapies that inhibit VEGF have revolutionized the management of retinal vascular diseases, but they are indicated for repeated intravitreal injections every 1 to 3 months. This results in a significant treatment burden and many patients ultimately receive fewer than the recommended number of injections resulting in suboptimal visual outcomes. More importantly, a proportion of eyes fail to attain optimal visual outcomes even when receiving anti-VEGF therapy at recommended intervals. The potential for AXT107, if approved, is to provide patients with best-in-class efficacy coupled with convenient once-a-year dosing which could transform the treatment of retinal diseases.

Theresa Heah, MD, Chief Medical Officer and EVP of Operations at AsclepiX, added, “We look forward to advancing our clinical program with AXT107 in three indications, wet AMD, DME and RVO and expect to initiate clinical trials in 2H 2020. Our clinical development program for AXT107, with a novel mechanism of action and a unique drug gel depot, may lead to innovative new treatment options,  delivering sustained vision gains with extended duration of action, for the benefit of our patients and caregivers, and to create value by reducing treatment burden for the benefit of ophthalmologists and payers.”


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