RARE Daily

VectivBio Raises $110 Million to Advance Rare Disease Pipeline

October 15, 2020

Rare Daily Staff

VectivBio closed a $110 million crossover financing to advance development of transformational medicines for patients with serious rare diseases.

The biotech’s expanded investor syndicate includes new investors Surveyor Capital, Cormorant Capital and Eventide Asset Management, with participation from existing investors Versant Ventures, OrbiMed, Novo Holdings, BPI France, Tekla Healthcare Investors, Inserm Transfer Initiative, and Cowen Healthcare Investments.

Proceeds from the financing will be used to support the phase 3 program of VectivBio’s lead experimental candidate, apraglutide, a next-generation GLP-2 analog in development to treat short bowel syndrome (SBS), early commercialization activities and further development of the pipeline through business development initiatives. Phase 2 studies of apraglutide demonstrated the potential for once-weekly dosing.

SBS results from extensive intestinal resection due to chronic inflammatory bowel disease, acute events such as trauma, mesenteric infarction, bariatric surgery or congenital abnormalities. Symptoms of SBS include diarrhea, dehydration, malnutrition, and weight loss.

To survive, patients with severe forms of SBS require parenteral support (PS), the intravenous delivery of essential nutrients, calories and fluids. For some patients, PS must be delivered for 10 to 15 hours per day, a significant burden that severely diminishes quality of life. In addition, people receiving chronic PS are exposed to increased rates of liver disease, and to an increased risk of infections due to the chronic presence of an infusion port positioned in a central vein. An estimated 35,000 people are thought to suffer from SBS in the United States and Europe, 15,000 who require lifelong PS and may thus be candidates for treatment with GLP-2 analogs.

Apraglutide is designed to increase the intestine’s ability to absorb fluids and nutrients, thereby minimizing the burden of parenteral support. It is a next-generation, synthetic GLP-2 analog rationally designed to achieve an extended half-life that has undergone extensive preclinical characterization and optimization. Based on preclinical and clinical data to date, apraglutide has the potential to be a best-in-class treatment for SBS, designed for once-weekly dosing with the potential to address the needs of patients across the anatomical disease spectrum that characterizes SBS.

“We look forward to continuing to advance apraglutide and to preparing our organization to bring a potential best-in-class therapy to people living with SBS,” said Luca Santarelli, CEO of VectivBio.

Photo: Luca Santarelli, CEO of VectivBio


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