San Francisco-based biotech company True North Therapeutics has closed $35 million in Series B funding. OrbiMed led the round with participation from return backers Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, MPM Capital, SR One and Baxter Ventures.
South San Francisco, CA, April 7, 2015—True North Therapeutics, a biotechnology company developing novel therapies that selectively inhibit the Complement system to treat rare diseases, announced today that it has completed a $35 million Series B equity financing. Proceeds from the financing will be used to advance multiple product candidates from True North’s R&D engine that target the Complement system, including implementation of the broad clinical program for True North’s lead drug candidate, TNT009. The Series B round is led by OrbiMed, an institutional healthcare crossover fund, and includes participation by existing investors Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, MPM Capital, SR One, and Baxter Ventures.
The Series B financing will provide True North with funding to complete clinical studies of TNT009 in multiple indications for Complement-mediated rare diseases, as well as advance a second drug candidate from the company’s preclinical pipeline into clinical development. For the company’s lead program with TNT009, True North will initiate the Phase 1a study in Q2 of 2015 and plans to begin its Phase 1b program later this year in patients with a variety of disorders, including antibody mediated rejection in kidney transplant and rare hematologic diseases, such as Cold Agglutinin Disease. The potential utility of TNT009 in patients with a range of antibody-driven diseases is based on the central role of Complement component C1s and dysregulation of the Classical Complement pathway in disease pathologies.
“True North has demonstrated leadership in the field of Complement therapeutics and has made strong progress with a novel product pipeline to address multiple therapeutic areas,” said Carl Gordon, PhD, Partner at OrbiMed. “We have great confidence in the high caliber management team and the rigorous science and clinical program behind TNT009. We look forward to supporting True North’s plans to open up new therapeutic opportunities targeting the Complement system and to bring innovative medicines to patients with rare diseases.”
With TNT009 and additional drug candidates in its pipeline, True North is positioned as the first company to target selective Classical Complement pathway blockade to treat rare diseases in the hematologic, kidney transplant, and skin therapeutic areas. TNT009 inhibits C1s, a protease within the C1-complex in the Complement system. The C1-complex is activated by antibodies and then triggers a powerful enzymatic cascade, and aberrant activation of this pathway in the Complement system can result in a range of cellular pathologies in numerous autoimmune and alloimmune conditions.
“We are delighted by the strong interest we received in this Series B fundraising and are excited to have chosen OrbiMed, a recognized institutional life science investor, to join our existing blue chip investors and broaden our investor base,” said Nancy Stagliano, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of True North. “True North is the first company to harness the power of selective targeting of the Classical Complement pathway to address rare diseases that have no approved therapies and few, if any, treatment options. We are excited to continue to rapidly move forward with our clinical plans for TNT009 and additional drug candidates in our pipeline to address rare diseases in hematology, skin conditions and kidney transplant.”
TNT009 is a first-in-class molecule designed to selectively target Classical Complement pathway blockade by inhibiting C1s, a serine protease within the C1-complex in the Complement pathway of the immune system. TNT009 is a monoclonal antibody that selectively inhibits the Classical Complement pathway, thereby preventing downstream disease processes involving phagocytosis, inflammation, and cell lysis. With a unique mechanism of action and high target specificity, TNT009 selectively inhibits disease processes in the Classical Complement pathway cascade while maintaining the important immune surveillance provided by the Alternative Complement Pathway and Lectin Complement Pathway.
About True North Therapeutics
True North Therapeutics is a biotechnology company developing a pipeline of novel therapies that selectively target the Complement pathway of the immune system to address fundamental mechanisms in diseases with high unmet need, including rare diseases. The company’s lead drug candidate, TNT009, offers a novel approach for treating Complement-mediated diseases by selectively inhibiting a target in the Classical Complement pathway. True North’s antibody drug development is focused on the treatment of rare diseases mediated by the Complement system in the hematologic, kidney transplant, and skin therapeutic areas. True North Therapeutics is located in South San Francisco, California. For more information, please visit www.truenorthrx.com.