Rignotec raises €15 million to advance RIG-I targeted immuno-oncology therapeutics
Posted: 6 September 2016 | Niamh Louise Marriott, Digital Content Producer | No comments yet
The funding will advance the ongoing development of Rigontec’s RIG-I agonist platform targeting oncological, anti-infective and inflammatory indications as well as accelerate the progress of lead candidate RGT100 towards the clinic…
Rigontec has secured a further €15 million in a third and final closing of its Series A round, bringing the total invested to €29.25 million. The funding will advance the ongoing development of Rigontec’s RIG-I agonist platform targeting oncological, anti-infective and inflammatory indications as well as accelerate the progress of lead candidate RGT100 towards the clinic.
The financing represents additional capital from current investors Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund, Forbion Capital Partners, High-Tech Gründerfonds, NRW.BANK, MP Healthcare Venture Management, Sunstone Capital and Wellington Partners Life Sciences.
“This funding puts us in a great position to further expand our RIG-I targeting preclinical pipeline and propel our first program into the clinic by early 2017. It also emphasises the unique and innovative potential our technology holds,” said Christian Schetter, CEO of Rigontec.
Rigontec has first mover position in accessing the RIG-I innate immune pathway to pioneer an immuno-oncology approach. The RIG-I pathway represents an essential part of the innate immune system that is usually activated to attack a viral pathogen. Rigontec has developed RNA-based technology to initiate through specific activation of RIG-I multiple pathways to kill tumour cells.
Besides an early induction of direct tumour cell killing, Rigontec’s therapeutics initiate an immediate immune response against a patient’s distinct cancer cells, thereby harnessing the body’s immune reaction mechanism to efficiently destroy the cancer cells as well as enable long-term immunity against the cancer. In addition to malignant diseases, Rigontec’s technology has also shown utility for the treatment of infectious diseases, further broadening the applicability of this groundbreaking new class of drugs.
Separately, Rigontec announced the incorporation of a US entity to complement its German operations and to facilitate its ongoing activities in the US, including future clinical development efforts. The company has established offices in Cambridge, Massachusetts, initially as part of the German Accelerator Life Sciences (GALS) program, an initiative supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) that helps German life science companies enter the US market.
“I congratulate Christian and the team for gaining this additional financial support and see the location in Cambridge enabled through the collaboration with the German Accelerator Life Sciences as a step towards further establishing Rigontec as the leader in RIG-I targeting therapeutics,” said Don deBethizy, Chairman of Rigontec’s Board of Directors.
“Rigontec’s approach has a great potential in immuno-oncology both as a stand-alone and in combination with other therapeutic modalities for a range of cancers.”