Medicxi, RA Capital join $30M round for Dutch biotech’s late-stage transplantation med

Bringing Medicxi and RA Capital Management into the fold, Xenikos has clinched $30 million in Series B funding to push its transplantation med through the last big research lap before approaching regulators’ doors.

Nijmegen, the Netherlands-based Xenikos is developing a therapy for steroid-resistant acute graft-versus-host disease called T-Guard, which helps restore balance in the immune system following hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. With the new funds, the biotech plans to conduct Phase III trials in both the US and EU — where T-Guard has been designated an orphan drug — as well as invest in commercial scale production.

Jake Simson

“Transplantation medicine has been starved of innovation for decades. For the thousands of patients receiving an allograft each year, GVHD can dash the hopes of recovery and cure,” said Jake Simson, principal at RA Capital, who’s joining Xenikos’ board alongside Medicxi’s Jon Edwards.

A small Phase I/II study involving 20 patients showed T-Guard has the potential to essentially cure the often fatal complication within one week of treatment. The registration trials are set to commence in 2019.

As T-Guard works by targeting CD3 and CD7 molecules on T cells and NK cells, Xenikos also sees a potential application in other autoimmune diseases like transplant-related rejection and acute solid-organ rejection.

Ypke van Oosterhout

“This round of financing is a critical milestone in our Company’s history, helping us bring T-Guard to market for treating steroid-resistant aGVHD in both the US and the EU,” said Ypke van Oosterhout, CEO of Xenikos.

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