Sector News

Merck sees promise in Macrophage Pharma

August 24, 2017
Life sciences

Merck Ventures has become the latest group to invest in Macrophage Pharma and take a position on the UK biotech’s board of directors.

The venture capital arm of German drugmaker Merck is streaming new funds into the group equal to that already provided individually by existing investors the CRT Pioneer Fund (CPF), Novo Holdings A/S and Aglaia Biomedical Ventures BV.

The financing will enable the company to complete the first clinical study of its lead development candidate, a macrophage targeted p38MAP kinase inhibitor, which is pencilled in for early next year, as well as advancing two additional discovery candidates into preclinical development.

The company said it is also planning to utilise the extra capital by adding a fourth macrophage-targeted project into its pipeline.

“We are excited to join this experienced management team and investor syndicate to help translate this immuno-oncology pipeline into clinical development,” commented Hakan Goker, senior investment director at Merck Ventures.

“Macrophage Pharma impressed us with the initial data generated. The differentiated, novel approach they are following in the TME offers promise for the immuno-oncology armoury of clinicians to address a broad range of cancers.”

Founded by CPF, the Marcrophage recently raised £9 million in a Series A financing round, led by CPF and specialist investors Novo Holdings and Aglaia Biomedical Ventures.

The company says its technology platform is designed to deliver small molecule drugs to tumour associated macrophages in a highly selective manner to activate the body’s natural immune system to fight cancer.

By Selina McKee

Source: Pharma Times

comments closed

Related News

January 29, 2023

Colorcon, Inc. signs Put agreement with intent to acquire controlled atmosphere packaging specialist Airnov Healthcare Packaging

Life sciences

Airnov provides critical healthcare industries with high-quality, controlled atmosphere packaging, to protect their products from moisture and oxygen. The business has manufacturing facilities in the USA, France, China and India and employs around 700 people.

January 29, 2023

Takeda pledges up to $1.13B for rights to Hutchmed’s cancer drug fruquintinib outside of China

Life sciences

Takeda of Japan has partnered with Hong Kong-based Hutchmed, gaining the commercial rights to colorectal cancer drug fruquintinib outside of China for $400 million up front, plus $730 million in potential milestone payments. Takeda also will help develop fruquintinib, which can be applied to subtypes of refractory metastatic colorectal cancer, regardless of biomarker status, the companies said.

January 29, 2023

Vir taps Bayer dealmaker Marianne De Backer as its next CEO

Life sciences

On April 3, Scangos, who’s been chief executive officer at Vir since the start of 2017, will hand over the reins to Marianne De Backer, Ph.D. De Backer comes over from Bayer, where she currently heads up pharmaceutical strategy, business development and licensing. Alongside her CEO appointment, De Backer is set to join Vir’s board of directors, the company said Wednesday.

How can we help you?

We're easy to reach