February 23, 2021
Lyvgen Biopharma, a biotech company focused on developing innovative immuno-oncology therapeutics, announces that it has completed Series C founding. This round of financing was led by IDG Capital and included Shanghai FTZ Fund, Suzhou Longmen Venture Capital, CHENGWEI Capital and others, with China Renaissance Group as the exclusive financial adviser.
Lyvgen uses its xLinkAb™ platform to generate IgG agonists targeting co-stimulatory receptors with selectivity for tumor microenvironment. Distinct from the first generation of CD137 agonist antibodies that have entered the clinic, LVGN6051 (CD137 agonist) has been designed to activate CD137 optimally in tumor microenvironment by leveraging the unique biology of FcγRIIB. In phase I clinical trials, LVGN6051 has shown high safety profile and preliminary efficacy signals, exhibiting first-in-class and best-in-class potential. Last year, Lyvgen has entered into a clinical trial collaboration agreement with MSD to evaluate LVGN6051, in combination with KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab), MSD’s anti-PD-1 therapy, in a phase 1 study in adult patients with advanced malignancies. LVGN7409 (CD40 agonist), an Fc-engineering mAb designed following a similar strategy as LVGN6051, is also in phase I clinical trial currently recruiting patients in the United States. In addition, Lyvgen has a number of innovative bispecific and monoclonal antibody programs in preclinical development.
"Immune co-stimulation pathway is a promising but highly challenging area in tumor immunotherapy," said Dr. Jieyi Wang, founder and CEO of Lyvgen, "Agonist antibodies are expected to bring breakthroughs to cancer immunotherapy, which currently is centered on PD-L/1 antibodies, and help broader patient populations in the clinic. Lyvgen focuses on developing innovative agonist antibodies via sophisticated and comprehensive molecule optimization, taking into account both structural and functional characteristics in vitro and in vivo, and covering both Fab and Fc region of natural IgG molecule. Our cross-link hypothesis and platform products have achieved pre-clinical and preliminary clinical validation, and been embraced by the industry”. Lyvgen has won the support from the world's leading investors, such as Morningside Ventures, 6 Dimensions Capital, and GTJA Investment Group. “We are very grateful to the new investors including IDG Capital, Shanghai FTZ Fund, Suzhou Longman Venture Capital, Chengwei Capital and China Renaissance Capital. " Dr. Wang emphasized.
Huang Tao, Vice President of IDG Capital, said, "In the post-PD-1 era, the development trend of tumor immunotherapy will be from PD-1 single agent to combination therapy, to improve the response rate and solve the problem of drug resistance. Immune agonists are an important direction of combination therapy. We are optimistic about Lyvgen's persistent focus and solid science in the field, differentiated product design and sound clinical investigation ability. We believe that under the leadership of Dr. Wang, Lyvgen will bring new breakthroughs in tumor immunotherapy and benefits to more patients."
"China Renaissance Capital is proud to have helped Lyvgen successfully complete its Series C financing," said Yijing Xie, Head of Healthcare and Life Technology Group, and Managing Director of China Renaissance Capital. Under Dr. Jieyi Wang since 2016, Lyvgen has developed a series of innovative antibodies, mainly tumor immune agonists, showing great clinical potential. We believe that the successful completion of this round of financing will help Lyvgen accelerate its development and eventually bring the benefit of innovation to cancer patients."
Lyvgen is an innovative biotech company focused on developing novel therapies for cancer. Its proprietary xLinkAb functional platform generated agonistic antibodies with tumour-localized immunostimulatory activities by balancing multiple functions of candidate antibodies, which has helped to generate a number of drug candidates presently in clinical development. Lyvgen employs over 50 scientists with global pharmaceutical research and development experience at its discovery, CMC and clinical operational sites in China and the USA.
For more information, visit www.lyvgen.com
About IDG Capital
IDG Capital started its venture capital business in China in 1993. After nearly 30 years of development, IDG Capital has always been pursuing long-term value investment. The accumulated assets under management are about 150 billion RMB. IDG Capital has invested in more than 1000 outstanding enterprises worldwide, of which more than 200 have successfully exited. IDG Capital focuses on leading companies in Internet and high technology (TMT), new consumer and services, culture and entertainment, healthcare, advanced manufacturing and clean energy, and invests in various stages including start-up, growth, maturity, M&A and restructuring. Its investment in the field of health care includes well-known cases such as Huada Intelligent Manufacturing, Suzhou Caike, Ping An Good Doctor, Edigene Inc., HifiBIO, Analytical BioSciences, Zgbiotech, ShengSci, Microtech Medical, Keyaimaging and AccutarBio.