Pheon Therapeutics has announced its launch to progress new antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) for treating solid tumours.

The launch comes after the company raised $68m in a series A financing round led by Brandon Capital, Forbion and Atlas Venture.

Seed investor Research Corporation Technologies (RCT) also took part in the funding round.

The latest financing will aid the company in progressing its lead ADC programme to clinical proof-of-concept (PoC) and validate the new ADC pipeline. 

The lead programme of Pheon uses a new target that is well expressed in various types of solid tumours.

This compound is anticipated to reach the investigational new drug (IND) application stage in the coming 18 months. 

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Leveraging a methodical strategy for the development of ADCs, Pheon uses both new and clinically validated monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). 

These antibodies are equipped either with warheads from its payload platform, which boasts a new mechanism of action or with off-the-shelf linker payload combinations to balance safety and efficacy for each target.

With the latest development, Serial biotech entrepreneur Bertrand Damour was appointed as the CEO of the company.

Damour said: “Pheon is developing a first-in-class ADC and has built a highly differentiated proprietary payload platform which is gaining strong momentum. 

“We are laser-focused on implementing our strategy to get our first programme into clinical development as rapidly as possible, and the preclinical data generated so far are very promising. 

“The track record and expertise of the leadership team at Pheon is outstanding, and I am proud to be working with them on this innovative approach to developing treatments for cancer patients.”