EGGENSTEIN-LEOPOLDSHAFEN, Germany--(BUSINESS WIRE)--amcure, a biopharmaceutical company developing first-in-class cancer therapeutics, today announced the closing of a Series B financing round amounting to a total of EUR 6 million. The financing comes from a consortium of existing investors and shareholders headed by LBBW Venture Capital, with participation from the KfW, MBG Mittelstaendische Beteiligungsgesellschaft Baden-Wuerttemberg, S-Kap Unternehmensbeteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) as well as private investors. The funding will be used to continue and accelerate the clinical development of amcure’s lead product candidate, AMC303, for treating metastasizing solid tumors. AMC303 has been developed to target CD44v6, a key extracellular molecule in molecular pathways of several receptor-tyrosine-kinases. This approach provides a potential novel mechanism for the treatment of patients with advanced and solid tumors that have already begun to spread throughout the body.
Additionally, amcure expanded its advisory board (“Beirat”) by appointing Dr. Bruno Osterwalder, who brings in additional industry and disease expertise. Dr. Osterwalder is a board-certified hematologist and oncologist with a background of 15 years of academic and clinical practice in internal medicine, hematology and oncology (Swiss Board Certifications). He subsequently spent 26 years in global drug development and strategic portfolio management in oncology and immuno-oncology drug development at F. Hoffmann-La Roche and Merck Serono. He is also a member of several professional societies such as ASCO, AACR, ASH, ECCO and ESMO.
“Our lead candidate, AMC303, has recently entered a Phase I/Ib clinical study, therefore this funding comes at a time when the company is taking meaningful steps forward towards achieving a better treatment for patients with advanced solid tumors. Today’s financing brings the total amount of capital raised from investors by amcure to EUR 10 million,” said Dr. Klaus Dembowsky, CEO of amcure.
“amcure has made significant progress towards bringing a new and potentially ground-breaking treatment option to patients with cancer metastasis, therefore we are enthusiastic about renewing and expanding our investment into the firm,” added Dr. Harald Poth, Senior Investment Manager at LBBW Venture Capital. “We are equally pleased with Dr. Osterwalder’s decision to join the advisory board of amcure. His expertise in oncology drug development from the lab all the way to pivotal trials will be extremely valuable as amcure enters the next stage of corporate development.”
amcure uses a novel approach by targeting one specific co-receptor, CD44v6, thus blocking three relevant oncological pathways (VEGF/VEGF-R2, HGF/c-Met and MSP/RON) which in turn diminish the means for tumor growth and metastases in patients. This unique approach could bring specific advantages over current treatment options as it offers a higher specificity and potential efficacy. amcure initiated a Phase I/Ib trial with its lead compound, AMC303, with treatment of the first patient at the end of October.
amcure’s lead compound, AMC303, has been developed as a potential treatment for patients with advanced and metastatic epithelial tumors, e.g. pancreatic cancer, head and neck cancer, gastric cancer, colorectal cancer, breast cancer and lung cancer. AMC303 has a high specificity for inhibiting CD44v6, a co-receptor required for signaling through multiple cellular pathways (c-Met, VEGFR-2, RON) involved in tumor growth, angiogenesis and the development and regression of metastases. AMC303 has demonstrated strong effects in various in vitro and in vivo assays.
amcure GmbH is a spin-off from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology established in 2012. The company develops peptide-based compounds for the treatment of highly metastatic forms of cancer. amcure’s most advanced development candidate, AMC303, has entered clinical development and has demonstrated in in vivo proof-of-concept studies a high efficacy against different types of epithelial cancers. amcure is sponsored by a grant from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.