Harpoon Therapeutics hits $45M in series B for I-O work

The biotech is looking to take its prostate cancer candidate into phase 1 tests next year.

Harpoon Therapeutics has raised $45 million in its second funding round as it looks to get its I-O candidates into the clinic as well as boosting its pipeline and setting up new partnerships.

The cancer biotech’s funding was co-led by Arix Bioscience (which recently got off a £100 million IPO) and New Leaf Venture Partners, with additional help from MPM Capital and Taiho Ventures.

Mark Chin, investment manager at Arix, and Ron Hunt, managing director at New Leaf also join Harpoon’s board, while Sakae Asanuma, president of Taiho Ventures, becomes an “observer” at board level.

Harpoon’s first clinical candidate, HPN424, is a prostate-specific membrane antigen-targeting TriTAC in metastatic prostate cancer; it’s expected to enter phase 1 tests next year. The biotech is also looking at finding and moving into development several other meds, as well as additional clinical candidates, “within the next year.”

“We are delighted to have top-tier investors supporting the series B financing, and welcome new investors as Harpoon shareholders,” said Jerry McMahon, Ph.D., president and CEO of Harpoon, in a release. “This investment is a clear validation of Harpoon’s TriTAC platform, which offers a new way to unleash the targeted cell-killing properties of a patient’s own immune system with a potential best-in-class T-cell engager platform.”