Crescendo takes cash haul to c.$150m after $32m raise and upscales cancer trial


Crescendo Biologics, a clinical stage immuno-oncology company based in Cambridge, has taken its funding to date to almost $150 million with a fresh $32 million raise from global investors.

The round was backed by all major existing shareholders, including Sofinnova Partners, Andera Partners, IP Group, BioNTech, Takeda and Quan Capital, plus new investor Kreos Capital to fund the additional combination expansion arm of the adaptive clinical protocol.

Crescendo, based at Babraham Research Campus and focused on developing novel, targeted T cell enhancing therapeutics, had previously raised $116.2m across seven rounds. 

The company simultaneously reveals the expansion of an ongoing Phase 1b clinical trial of CB307 in PSMA+ solid tumours through the addition of a new pembrolizumab (anti-PD-1).

Its lead proprietary programme is now entering the cohort expansion part of the trial. The monotherapy expansion cohort is already underway in individuals with PSMA+ metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) in a last-line setting.

The additional pembrolizumab combination expansion cohort is expected to be initiated in Q3 and will be open to those with PSMA+ mCRPC.

CEO Theodora Harold said: “We are delighted to have secured this additional financing which will enable us to accelerate the clinical development of CB307.

“Preclinical data generated by Crescendo, such as those recently presented at AACR in Orlando, as well as clinical data presented by others earlier this year, illustrate the profound effect that adding PD-1 antagonism can have to the co-stimulation of T cells, including via CD137 agonism.

“We are very excited to further investigate the activity of the combination of CB307 plus pembrolizumab in our clinical study and would like to thank everyone involved in the trial and our existing investors for their ongoing support as well as the team at Kreos Capital for joining us and sharing our vision.”

Sonia Benhamida, Principal at Kreos Capital added: “We have been very impressed with the Crescendo team and the power and potential of the Humabody® VH platform is evident across their proprietary and partnered programmes.

“Our investment model is ideally suited to Crescendo’s needs at this time, and we are pleased to partner with the Crescendo management team and to enable the acceleration and execution of the expanded clinical plan for CB307.”

Beyond Crescendo’s proprietary pipeline, the company has global, multi-target discovery and development collaborations with both Takeda and BioNTech and an exclusive, worldwide licensing agreement with Zai Lab for ZL-1102 (formerly CB001, an anti-IL-17A targeting Humabody), which is expected to enter global Phase 2 clinical development in patients with psoriasis.

Published: 24.07.23

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