Andera Partners Participates in the €45 Million Series B financing of Grey Wolf Therapeutics, led by Pfizer Ventures, to Advance First-of-its-Kind Neoantigen Creation Approaches
Premier Syndicate of Life Science Industry Investors led by Pfizer Ventures and Earlybird Venture Capital and including Canaan, Andera Partners, Oxford Science Enterprises and British Patient Capital
Proceeds to Support Advancement of Lead Candidate, ERAP1 Inhibitor GRWD5769, into the Clinic in 1H 2023; Continued R&D for Follow-On ERAP Inhibition Strategies
Grey Wolf Therapeutics, a biotechnology company focused on generating entirely novel anti-tumour immune responses through targeted cancer neoantigen creation, today announced the closing of an oversubscribed $49 million Series B financing. The financing was co-led by Pfizer Ventures and Earlybird Venture Capital, and also included investment from new investors Oxford Science Enterprises and British Patient Capital and existing investors Canaan and Andera Partners. Proceeds will support the continued development of the company’s first-of-its-kind immuno-oncology approaches designed to overcome key resistance mechanisms through the creation of novel cancer antigens. This includes the anticipated advancement of the company’s lead asset, GRWD5769, into a Phase 1/2 clinical trial in the first half of 2023.
Grey Wolf Therapeutics’ unique therapeutic strategy is centered on generating entirely novel immune responses against tumours thereby overcoming key resistance mechanisms to current immuno-oncology therapy such as poor tumour recognition by T cells and T cell exhaustion. This is achieved through targeted inhibition of the endoplasmic reticulum aminopeptidases (ERAP1 or ERAP2), which drives the generation and presentation of novel and potent cancer antigens to the surface of tumour cells, in turn eliciting a de novo T cell response against tumours.
The ground-breaking research and development activities conducted by the Grey Wolf team have generated a pipeline of novel ERAP inhibition programs, led by GRWD5769, a potentially first-in-class ERAP1 inhibitor. During the first half of 2023, the company intends to initiate an adaptive Phase 1/2 clinical trial evaluating the safety, tolerability, and efficacy of GRWD5769, including a planned combination with the PD-1 inhibitor Libtayo® (cemiplimab), in a range of solid tumour types. Additionally, the company will direct a portion of the Series B proceeds to follow-on programs including efforts focused on ERAP2 inhibition and the identification of entirely novel cancer antigens that can be targeted with MHC Class I directed therapies, such as soluble T cell receptor (TCR) and TCR mimic bispecifics.
“This syndicate of leading life science industry investors brings a wealth of relevant expertise and resources to Grey Wolf at a critical time in our evolution as we prepare to enter the clinic,” said Peter Joyce, Ph.D., chief executive officer of Grey Wolf Therapeutics. “The funding these groups have committed to Grey Wolf will not only support our efforts to demonstrate clinical proof-of-concept for ERAP inhibition with our lead program, but it will also drive our continued scientific exploration in this area as we aim to further advance and broaden our pipeline of first-of-their-kind therapeutics.”
Raphaël Wisniewski, partner in the Andera Life Sciences team, comments: “We at Andera continue to be excited by the very original and well differentiated immuno-oncology approach being developed by the company, designed to overcome certain limitations of current immune checkpoint inhibitors. We are proud of the tremendous progress made by the team that we have supported since company’s inception, switching from a discovery-stage to a Phase-1 ready biotech company. We are very pleased to welcome high-quality international new investors to the syndicate to explore the full potential of ERAP1 modulation in the clinic”.
In conjunction with the financing, Grey Wolf Therapeutics has announced several new appointees to its board of directors including:
- Sally Dewhurst, senior associate, Oxford Science Enterprises
- Emma Johnson, investment manager, British Patient Capital
- Rabab Nasrallah, principal, Earlybird Venture Capital
- Marie-Claire Peakman, principal, Pfizer Ventures