NEW HAVEN: The privately owned and venture financed Arvinas LLC, has raised $55 million Series C financing for development of drugs to address prostate and breast cancers.
The financing was led by new investor Nextech Invest,of Zurich, Switzwerland with participation from additional new investors Deerfield Management, NY Hillhouse Capital, and Sirona Capital, of West Perth, Austrailia. The company’s xisting investors also participated in this financing round, including Canaan Partners, 5AM Ventures, RA Capital Management, OrbiMed, and New Leaf Venture Partners.
Hillhouse Capital primarily invests in Asia and has more than $20 billion in investments. Its initial capital of $20 million was provided by Yale University, in an investment directed by David Swensen for the Yale Endowment.
Arvinas drugs are based on technology developed by Yale professor and researcher Craig Crews who founded Arvinas. Business New Haven designated Crews a Greater New Haven Healthcare Hero in 2015. Crews co-founded Proteolix , which developed the cancer treatment Kryprolis. Proteolix was purchased by Onyx Pharmaceuticals which after successful clinical results sold the company to Amgen for $10.4 billion, primarily for the acquisition of Krypolis.
In January the company announced a potentially $603 million dollar development partnership with Pfizer.
The company is hoping to advance its two drug candidates to clinical trials.
“This past year has been exciting for us with two clinical candidate nominations, the expansion of our collaboration with Genentech and the announcement of a new collaboration with Pfizer,” said John Houston, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Arvinas. “With this additional financial support from existing and new investors who believe in our innovative protein degradation platform, we will continue executing on our strategy of progressing our lead programs to the clinic, expanding the use of the platform outside of oncology, and tackling undruggable targets.”
In connection with the financing, Jakob Loven, Ph.D., partner with Nextech Invest, will join the Arvinas board of directors.
“The Arvinas PROTAC platform is an elegant, novel therapeutic modality that circumvents delivery challenges associated with existing therapeutic approaches to eliminate protein function, and Arvinas has proven to be the clear leader in developing a new era of targeted medicines using its protein degradation technology,” said Dr. Loven.