Immatics banks $70M to fund pivotal cancer vax trial

Underscoring the general excitement about the market potential of therapeutic cancer vaccines, Germany's immatics has gathered more than $70 million from its Series C investors to back the development of its experimental kidney cancer vaccine. The round, one of the biggest in Europe this year, will fuel a Phase III trial designed to produce pivotal data on IMA901.

The biotech--a 2007 Fierce 15 company--says that about half of the new money came from dievini Hopp Biotech holding, Wellington Partners and other existing shareholders. The other half came from new investors MIG-advised funds and AT Impf GmbH.

Immatics' cancer vaccine is made up of 10 different tumor-associated peptides (dubbed TUMAPs), which are frequently found to be over-expressed in most patients suffering from renal cell carcinoma. The primary endpoint of the trial will be overall survival, and the first results are expected towards the end of 2013.

"It is increasingly clear that therapeutic vaccines have the potential to revolutionize the treatment of cancer," says Dr. Matthias Kromayer from MIG AG. "We were very impressed by the Phase II results immatics generated with IMA901 and saw in the management team and in their plans, a clear route to a high increase in the value of the company."

- here's the immatics release
- read the Reuters story