Apexigen, Inc., a San Carlos, Calif.-based clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, completed its Series B and Series C financings in which it raised a total of $73m.
The $15m Series B financing was led by Decheng Capital while the recent $58m Series C financing was led by 3E Bioventures Capital, Virtus Inspire Ventures, and SV Tech Ventures. As a result of these financings, Apexigen’s Board of Directors was expanded to include Dan Zabrowski, Ph.D. of Decheng Capital, and Karen Liu, Ph.D. of 3E Bioventures Capital.
The company intends to use these proceeds to advance the clinical development of its lead immuno-oncology (I-O) therapeutic APX005M, a monoclonal antibody targeting CD40. Currently, APX005M is in multiple Phase 2 clinical trials to treat different types of cancers. The proceeds will also be used to discover and develop Apexigen’s broader pipeline of therapies.
Led by Xiaodong Yang, M.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer, Apexigen develops a new generation of antibody therapeutics for oncology, with an emphasis on new immuno-oncology agents that could harness the patient’s immune system to combat and eradicate cancer. APX005M is a novel, humanized monoclonal antibody that stimulates the anti-tumor immune response. APX005M targets CD40, a co-stimulatory receptor that is essential for activating both innate and adaptive immune systems.
Binding of APX005M to CD40 on antigen presenting cells (i.e., dendritic cells, monocytes and B-cells) initiates a multi-faceted immune response bringing multiple components of the immune system (e.g., T cells, macrophages) to work in concert against cancer. APX005M is currently in Phase 2 clinical development for the treatment of cancers such as melanoma, non-small cell lung cancer, pancreatic cancer and renal cell carcinoma in various combinations with immunotherapy, chemotherapy or radiation therapy.