H.I.G. Capital News
Gemin X Closes $8 Million Series E Financing
Supports Preparations for Phase 3 Pivotal Trial for Obatoclax in Small Cell Lung Cancer
MALVERN, PA and MONTRÉAL, QC - August 04, 2010 - Gemin X Pharmaceuticals, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing novel, targeted cancer therapeutics, today announced the completion of its $8 million Series E round of financing. All of the company's preferred stockholders participated in the round, led by Caxton Advantage Life Sciences Fund, L.P. and Sanderling Venture Partners.
"We are pleased that our committed group of investors continue to support Gemin X and the future of our lead product candidate, obatoclax, as we explore strategic opportunities for this novel pan Bcl-2 inhibitor," said Peter R. Dolan, chairman and chief executive officer of Gemin X. "The Series E funding follows on a growing body of positive clinical data from our randomized, controlled Phase 2b study of obatoclax for the first-line treatment of extensive stage small cell lung cancer (ES-SCLC), and we look forward to submitting this data for presentation at an upcoming medical conference. A positive outcome in ES-SCLC provides proof-of-principle that we expect could translate to multiple other cancer indications."
"As an early investor in Gemin X, I am proud of the company's achievements, most notably its progress in advancing obatoclax, a pan Bcl-2 inhibitor and the most advanced compound of its kind in the clinic today," said Robert G. McNeil, Ph.D., founder and managing director at Sanderling Venture Partners and member of the board for Gemin X. "When the survival data from the Phase 2b study of obatoclax becomes available, we anticipate that it will provide a strong foundation for achievement of the company's strategic goals."
Gemin X announced in March 2010 the completion of enrollment in its ongoing Phase 2b clinical trial of obatoclax (GX15-070) for the treatment of patients with ES-SCLC. This multi-center, randomized, controlled trial is designed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of obatoclax in combination with standard chemotherapy. In the study, a combination of carboplatin, etoposide and obatoclax (the CEO arm) is being compared to a standard regimen of carboplatin and etoposide alone (the control arm) in patients with ES-SCLC. The primary endpoint of the study is comparison of overall response rate (ORR) for the CEO arm versus the control arm, based on RECIST criteria. Secondary endpoints include comparison of six-month rate of progression free survival (PFS) as well as overall PFS. Patients are also being followed for overall survival (OS) and safety. The Phase 2b study is being conducted at more than 60 leading cancer centers, primarily in the United States and Europe.
"Since our initial investment in Gemin X in June 2008, the company has made tremendous progress with its portfolio of cancer therapeutics, particularly obatoclax, which is making strides in small cell lung cancer, an area where there has been no change in standard-of-care for over 25 years and where new and improved therapies are desperately needed. As a product candidate for the first-line treatment of patients with SCLC, we believe that obatoclax represents a significant market opportunity and an important addition to the treatment regimen. We remain enthusiastic supporters of the company and its novel scientific approaches to cancer management that are now gaining clinical validation," said Eric Roberts, co-founder and managing director at Caxton Advantage and member of the Gemin X board.
About Gemin X Pharmaceuticals
Gemin X is developing first-in-class cancer therapeutics based on reinitiating programmed forms of cell death, including apoptotic and autophagic cell death, and based on the inhibition of metabolism in cancerous cells. Gemin X currently has several clinical development programs underway, including a Phase 2 clinical trial for its lead product candidate obatoclax (GX15-070), an innovative pan Bcl-2 inhibitor, and GMX1777, a novel inhibitor of NAD+ synthesis that has completed a Phase 1 study. Gemin X also has preclinical studies underway for its Telomere Capping program. Potential treatment indications for the full scope of pipeline programs span a broad range of hematological and solid tumors, including chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), melanoma, small cell lung cancer (SCLC), lymphoma, myeloma and glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Founded in 1998, Gemin X is privately held with drug development and executive headquarters in Malvern, Pennsylvania and research and development in Montréal, Canada.