Iksuda Therapeutics, the developer of a new generation of antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) with raised therapeutic index, has completed a US$47 million financing round, co-led by Mirae Asset Capital and its subsidiaries, Celltrion and Premier Partners. The funding will support the advancement of Iksuda’s lead ADC assets and expansion of its payload and conjugation platform technologies.
Iksuda’s lead pre-clinical candidate, IKS03, is a best-in-class CD19-targeted ADC candidate for B-cell cancers. The investment will enable progression of IKS03 to first-in-human phase clinical trials. It will also be used to accelerate Iksuda’s earlier-stage programmes including IKS04 and IKS012 to IND filing.
Iksuda’s ADC programmes target tumours that currently have limited treatment options and high relapse rates. The company’s drug development pipeline is centred on the improved safety and efficacy conferred by tumour activated, prodrug payloads in combination with stable conjugation technologies, including its proprietary novel PermaLink platform. Iksuda’s research-stage pipeline utilises its proprietary Protein Alkylating (ProAlk) tumour-activated payload platform, recently licensed from Göttingen University. The novel mode of action for the ProAlk tuneable payload series differs from the field’s primary focus of intra- or DNA inter-strand cross-linking, conferring benefits against drug and tumour resistance mechanisms, and enabling the development of more powerful, more tolerable ADCs.
Dr Dave Simpson, Chief Executive Officer, Iksuda Therapeutics, said: “This is a transformational investment milestone for Iksuda, enabling us to focus on the progression of our industry-leading ADC programmes and bring them to the clinic, whilst supporting our commercial growth. The funding not only reflects the potential of our technologies, but also the unmatched expertise of the Iksuda team. We are grateful for the support of this group of investors and delighted to welcome them to the team.”