ADC Completes $76 Million Series E Financing Expansion, Bringing Total to $276 Million


ADC Therapeutics, based in Lausanne, Switzerland, closed on an expansion of its Series E financing round. The expansion was $76 million, bringing the total Series E financing round to $276 million. Since 2011, ADC has raised $531 million.

ADC focuses on antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs). These are antibodies specifically designed to target a cancer cell and are attached by a molecular linker to a cancer drug. This allows for more targeted delivery of the cancer-killing drug. In the company’s case, the ADCs are based on pyrrolobenzodiazepine (PBD) as the toxic drug.

“We are delighted to expand our Series E round, which provides us with a strong balance sheet to fund preparations for a potential Biologic License Application (BLA) for ADCT-402 (loncastuximab tesirine) in relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) in the second half of 2020, as well as preparations for a pivotal Phase II trial of ADCT-301 (camidanlumab tesirine) in Hodgkin's lymphoma based on our recent end of Phase I meeting with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,” stated Chris Martin, ADC’s chief executive officer.

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The funds raised will take the company through the end of 2020. The company plans to have a product on the market in 2021, if all goes well.

On April 24, the company inked a discovery collaboration and license deal with Suzhou, China-based Adagene. ADC will use Adagene’s SAFEbody technology platform to create a masked antibody that will combine with ADC’s pyrrolobenzodiazepine (PBD) cytotoxic payload technology. The goal is to develop a novel ADC against a solid tumor.

Patrick van Berkel, ADC’s senior vice president of Research and Development, stated at the time, “The SAFEbody technology requires specific conditions within the tumor microenvironment to unleash the ADC’s full therapeutic potential. Combining a SAFEbody with highly potent PBD-based payloads will allow us to develop potent new tumor-specific ADCs that depend on the unique conditions in the local tumor microenvironment for full activation.”

ADC refers to their PBD as “highly toxic warheads” that are attached to a monoclonal antibody via a chemical linker. The company has five PBD-based ADCs in ongoing clinical trials in the U.S. and Europe, and a deep pipeline of preclinical ADCs.

On February 20, ADC announced the first patient had been dosed in a Phase I trial of ADC-402 in combination with Pharmacyclics’ ibrutinib in patients with advanced diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) or mantle cell lymphoma (MCL). ADC-402 is designed to target and kill CD19-expressing malignant B-cells. It is also being studied in an ongoing Phase II trial in patients with relapsed or refractory DLBCL and a Phase I trial in combination with AstraZeneca’s Imfinzi (durvalumab) in multiple types of R/R non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

At the time, Julien Depaus, an investigator for the trial at CHU UCL Namur (UCL Namur University), Yvoir, Belgium, stated, “Unfortunately, a significant number of patients with B-cell malignancies will relapse after initial treatment. As the prognosis for these patients is poor, it is important to evaluate potential viable new treatments for relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma and mantle cell lymphoma, such as the combination of ADC-402 and ibrutinib we are studying in this Phase I trial.”

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