SAN DIEGO, February 19, 2016 — eFFECTOR Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing selective translation regulators for the treatment of cancer, today announced it has increased its Series B financing to a total of $56M.
The new funding came from Sectoral Asset Management, a new investor in the syndicate, as well as existing investors. In conjunction with the increase, eFFECTOR has appointed Maha Katabi, Ph.D., CFA, partner, private equity at Sectoral Asset Management, to its board of directors. These developments further position eFFECTOR to pursue comprehensive clinical development of its lead product candidate, eFT508, a potent, highly selective, and orally bioavailable MNK1 and MNK2 inhibitor, across multiple tumor types. The funds will also be used to advance the company's discovery pipeline addressing additional targets.
eFT508 is currently being evaluated in an open-label Phase 1/2 trial in patients with advanced solid tumors. The company expects to file a second IND for eFT508 in lymphoma in the first half of 2016 and open expansion arms in specific solid tumors as well as lymphoma. The company also plans to declare its second development candidate later this year.
"Cancer has proven to be a very difficult disease," said Steve Worland, Ph.D., president and CEO of eFFECTOR. "If we are going to bring more effective therapy to patients, we need to think strategically about new approaches to treatment. Translation regulation targets such as MNK1 and MNK2, which simultaneously regulate multiple cancer-driving and immune-signaling pathways, are an ideal way to pursue this need. With this financial backing, eFFECTOR can make significant progress developing eFT508 and the remainder of our pipeline."
Added Dr. Katabi, "Sectoral selects investments in healthcare companies developing products that can make a meaningful impact on the patients and healthcare systems they serve. Translation control is one of the most intriguing fields of research in oncology. We are very pleased to work with the experienced team of eFFECTOR to make eFT508 the first pharmacological treatment to affect the gene translation machinery, and develop a drug useful to patients with different types of cancer."
Heidi Chokeir, Ph.D.