PRISM Pharma Closes $15 million Series C Financing to Advance PRI-724 into
Data recently presented at ASCO demonstrates compound's potential in solid
YOKOHAMA, Japan, June 13, 2013
YOKOHAMA, Japan, June 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- PRISM Pharma Co., Ltd., a drug
discovery company focused on developing small molecule technologies that
modulate protein-protein interactions, today announced the close of an
approximately $15 million (approximately ¥1.4 billion) Series C financing.
This funding was led by Innovation Network Corporation of Japan, a unique
public-private partnership aimed at promoting innovation and enhancing the
value of Japanese businesses. Existing investor Development Bank of Japan also
participated in the round. Proceeds will be used to fund clinical trials of
PRISM's lead compound, PRI-724, for the treatment of fibrosis and other
PRI-724 modulates signaling of the Wnt/beta-catenin signaling pathway,
shifting from symmetric to asymmetric cell division resulting in a shift from
proliferation towards differentiation. Excessive proliferation is a hallmark
of cancer and can also result in damaging fibrosis in diseases such as
hepatitis-driven cirrhosis, Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) and renal
disease, as well as many skin and eye conditions. There is no effective means
to reverse fibrosis, and treatment is limited to slowing disease progression.
In animal models, PRI-724 has reversed the formation of excessive fibrous
connective tissue, demonstrating its potential to treat fibrosis in several
indications including Hepatitis C and IPF. PRISM plans to start a fibrosis
clinical trial in the fall and expects to obtain efficacy data from this and
additional clinical trials by early 2015.
"Targeting the pathways that control cellular differentiation and
proliferation has potential to treat a range of conditions that are driven by
cell division, including fibrosis, cancer, and other proliferative diseases,"
said Hiroyuki Kouji, CEO of PRISM Pharma. "We have already made significant
strides in studying PRI-724 in oncology, yet many patients suffering from
fibrosis-related conditions today can only hope at best to slow the increase
of fibrosis. Our Series C will allow us to move PRI-724 into the clinic for
PRI-724 is currently in clinical trials for the treatment of solid tumors and
leukemia. PRISM has licensed oncology rights to Eisai Co., Ltd. Phase 1 data
from a clinical trial of PRI-724 in patients with advanced solid tumors was
recently presented at the 49^th Annual Meeting of the American Society of
Clinical Oncology (ASCO). Data from 18 patients with solid tumors demonstrated
PRI-724 had an acceptable safety profile and that its administration led to a
decrease in the expression of survivin in circulating tumor cells, a biomarker
of on-target drug effect.
PRI-724 is an antiproliferative small molecule that selectively inhibits the
CBP/beta-catenin complex, which modulates the beta-catenin dependent pathway
of Wnt signaling. Activation of the Wnt/beta-catenin signaling pathway is
observed in various tumor cells and results in proliferation and metastasis.
PRI-724 exhibits a selective antiproliferative effect, inhibiting various
cancer cell lines in vitro and substantially inhibiting tumor growth in animal
studies. PRI-724 is currently in clinical trials in oncology indications,
partnered with Eisai Co., Ltd. PRI-724 also has potential to provide
therapeutic benefit in non-oncology areas such as fibrosis and clinical trials
in that indication are targeted to start in the second half of 2013.
About PRISM Pharma Co., Ltd.
PRISM Pharma Co., Ltd. has developed its platform technology to modulate
inter-cellular protein-protein interactions using peptide mimetic small
molecules and found various hit compounds including PRI-724.
This platform is expected to create new drug discovery domains and to meet
various unmet medical needs.
SOURCE PRISM Pharma Co., Ltd.
Contact: Dai Takehara, CFO PRISM Pharma, Takehara@prismbiolab.com,
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