Thursday May 3, 2018 0 comments
BOULDER -- OnKure, Inc., the epigenetics-focused drug discovery and development company advancing the first Largazole-derived, histone deacetylase inhibitor into Phase 1 clinical trials, announced it has completed a $7M Series A financing.
Delian Capital led the investment round with participation from existing and new investors including OnKure management, the company said, adding that the investment will help OnKure aggressively accelerate its research and development activities.
Delian Capital invests in early-stage biopharmaceutical startups that redefine or create large new markets, with notable investments such as Chance Pharma, MicuRx and Bioceutiq.
The Series A financing builds on an exceptional year for OnKure, which made significant progress towards advancing its first clinical candidate, OKI-179, towards Phase 1.
OnKure said its platform transforms naturally occurring, biologically active lead compounds into commercial drugs that address a variety of diseases with an emphasis on oncology.
At the heart of OnKure's solution to Class 1 histone deacetylase inhibition is a molecule (OKI-179) that parallels the potency and selectivity of Romidepsin (Istodax), the most potent Class 1 biased histone deacetylase inhibitor currently approved by the FDA.
While Romidepsin is administered by continuous infusion, OKI-179 was designed as an orally active drug and has demonstrated a superior safety profile in preclinical studies, OnKure said. As an orally administered therapy, it is also more suitable for combination dosing with a variety of targeted anti-cancer agents.
"We are delighted that Delian Capital chose to lead our Series A round and I look forward to working with Guobao Zhao, VP of Delian Capital's Healthcare Division and OnKure's newest addition to the board," said Tony Piscopio, OnKure co-founder, president and CEO.
"OnKure will use these funds to accelerate the clinical development of OKI-179 and expand its pipeline through in-licensing first-in-class or best-in-class compounds that synergize with OKI-179."
"Delian invests in pharmaceutical companies with a deep understanding of disease mechanisms and extensive clinical expertise," said Zhao.
"OnKure has a very experienced management team, and thus we look forward to supporting the parallel development of OKI-179 in the United States and China, as this novel HDAC inhibitor has the potential to offer an attractive option for addressing cancer's growing unmet medical needs."