Fort Worth-based Actuate Therapeutics Inc. has announced that it raised $21.7 million in a Series B financing round.
Actuate is a private biopharmaceutical company that focuses on developing compounds to be used in the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases leading to fibrosis and neurodegeneration. The round was led by Kairos Ventures. DEFTA Partners, Tech Coast Angels, and existing investors, Fort Worth-based Bios Partners, also participated.
In September, Actuate reported that it had raised $4.025 million in a debt-only funding round. Founded in 2015, the company said its mission is to discover, develop, and commercialize new agents that target GSK-3β, an enzyme in humans that is encoded by the GSK3B gene.
Actuate plans to use the funding to expand its ongoing Phase 1/2 clinical trial—which it has referred to as “groundbreaking”—and fund development programs. CEO and President Daniel Schmitt said Actuate is quickly advancing the 1801 clinical trial of 9-ING-41 in U.S. adult cancer patients.
“The financing allows us to expand the 1801 clinical trial out to our world-leading oncology research institution network in the US and Europe; to initiate Investigator Initiated Trials being developed with our physician/scientist collaborators; and to advance our pediatric neuroblastoma program,” Schmitt said.
Actuate said that earlier this year, the first patient was treated in the Actuate 1801: Phase 1/2 Study of 9-ING-41, a Glycogen Synthase Kinase-3 Beta (GSK-3β) Inhibitor, as a Single Agent and Combined with Chemotherapy, in Patients with Refractory Hematologic Malignancies or Solid Tumors at Brown University/Rhode Island Hospital. The study is now actively recruiting additional patients at the following institutions:
- Brown University Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island
- UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center in San Francisco, California
- Miami Cancer Institute in Miami, Florida
- Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota
- Sanford Research in Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Actuate’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Frank Giles said the collaboration done on the 1801 study has been dynamic and productive, with global leaders in oncology.
“Our collaborations with expert colleagues on the development of Investigator Initiated Trials will rapidly expand our knowledge beyond that derived from the 1801 study, and these studies are a high priority for us,” he said. “We are also focused on using the initial 1801 study data to inform the design of 9-ING-41 regimens for children and adolescents with refractory tumors, with an initial focus on neuroblastoma, where 9-ING-41’s pre-clinical activity is noteworthy.”
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