Connect Biopharma, a San Diego, CA- and Taicang, China-based clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on identifying and developing potent and specific immune modulating molecules, completed $115m Series C financing.
The round was led by new investor RA Capital Management. Additional new investors Lilly Asia Ventures, Boxer Capital, and HBM Healthcare Investments joined existing investor Qiming Venture Partners in the financing. In conjunction with the financing, Derek DiRocco, PhD, Principal at RA Capital Management, is joining the Connect Biopharma Board of Directors.
Led by Zheng Wei, PhD, Co-founder and CEO, Connect Biopharma is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on discovery and development of novel immune modulators for the treatment of autoimmune diseases and inflammation. The company’s proprietary Immune Modulation Technology Platform is a high-throughput screening platform built on the biology of T cell function, and rapidly identifies molecules that target clinically validated disease pathways more efficiently than the traditional discovery approaches. It is advancing CBP-201, a potent monoclonal antibody against IL-4Rα, a cell surface protein required for the signaling of both IL-4 and IL-13 and CBP-307, a novel second-generation agonist of the sphingosine-1-phosphate 1 receptor (S1P1), a G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) that plays a central role in regulating T cell movement. In addition to its lead drug candidates, CBP-201 and CBP-307, the company is also advancing three preclinical programs, comprising two small molecule candidates (CBP-174 and CBP-312) and one antibody targeting IL-33 (CBP-233) as treatments for various serious inflammatory conditions. Connect holds all global rights to its proprietary pipeline and discovery technologies.
The company plans to use the proceeds to support the ongoing Phase 2 clinical trial for CBP-201 in adult patients with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (AD) and the ongoing Phase 2 trials of CBP-307 in patients with moderate-to-severe ulcerative colitis (UC); expand the CBP-201 clinical development program into additional indications; and manufacture clinical material to support future Phase 3 trials of CBP-201 and CBP-307. They also expect to use a portion of the proceeds to advance additional preclinical programs into clinical development, including CBP-174, a small molecule in development for the treatment of pruritus.