Sermonix Pharmaceuticals Raises $40M in Series A3 Funding


Sermonix, a Columbus OH-based biopharmaceutical company, raised $40M in Series A3 funding.

The round was led by Perceptive Xontogeny Ventures Fund II (PXV Fund) with participation from existing investors. As part of the agreement, Fred Callori and Ben Askew, Ph.D., partners in the PXV Fund, were appointed to the Sermonix Board of Directors.

Founded in 2014 by David Portman, M.D., a clinical researcher and expert in women’s health, menopause and selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM) therapy, Sermonix is a privately held biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of female-specific oncology products and is currently undertaking two Phase 2 clinical studies of lasofoxifene, its lead investigational drug.

Lasofoxifene is an investigational, nonsteroidal selective estrogen receptor modulator (SERM), which Sermonix licensed globally from Ligand Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: LGND) and has been studied in previous comprehensive Phase 1-3 non-oncology clinical trials in more than 15,000 postmenopausal women worldwide. Its bioavailability and activity in mutations of the estrogen receptor could potentially hold promise for patients who have acquired endocrine resistance due to ESR1 mutations, a common finding in the metastatic setting and an area of high unmet medical need. Lasofoxifene’s novel activity in ESR1 mutations was discovered at Duke University and Sermonix has exclusive rights to develop and commercialize the product in this area. If approved, it can play a critical role in the targeted precision medicine treatment of advanced ER+ breast cancer.

The company intends to use the funds to expand its development efforts. Funds will be used to further advance lasofoxifene through late-stage clinical development as a next-generation oral SERM to treat women with increasingly prevalent ESR1 breast cancer mutations. Initial data from both Phase 2 clinical trials is expected in H1 2022.

The management team, whose members have significant experience in all stages of the drug development and regulatory process and includes:

  • Paul Plourde, M.D., vice president of oncology clinical development,
  • Barry Komm, Ph.D., chief scientific officer,
  • Elizabeth Attias, M.M.Sc., Sc.D., chief strategy and development officer,
  • Simon Jenkins, Ph.D. vice president of operations.

Sermonix non-executive chairman of the board is Anthony Wild, Ph.D., former president of both Parke-Davis Pharmaceuticals and Warner-Lambert’s Pharmaceutical Division.