DiogenX, a biotech company focused on regenerating insulin-producing beta cells for the treatment of diabetes, has announced the successful completion of a €27.5 million ($30 million) Series A financing round.
New investors Roche Venture Fund, Eli Lilly and Company and Omnes joined this round alongside existing investors Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund (BIVF), JDRF T1D Fund, and Adbio partners. Proceeds will be used to advance the lead drug candidate towards clinical development in patients with type 1 diabetes (T1D). DiogenX previously raised $4.8 million in June 2020.
DiogenX’s lead program aims to regenerate pancreatic insulin-producing beta cells using a recombinant protein, which modulates the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway. If successful, the company said it has potential to be a first-in-class, disease-modifying therapy for diabetes.
To date, the company has demonstrated efficacy in preventing and reversing diabetes using in vivo models of type 1 diabetes, and achieved a first proof of principle with a significant increase in functional insulin-producing human beta cells in preclinical experiments. Long term exposure was well tolerated in preclinical studies, supporting the ability to safely intervene on the Wnt/β-catenin pathway with DiogenX’s approach. Collectively, the data show potential for broad clinical utility both as a monotherapy and in combination with insulins and/or other therapies targeting pancreatic ß-cells.
DiogenX is working on a “Breakthrough therapy”
“We are working to develop a breakthrough therapy to harness the patient’s remaining endogenous beta cells to increase insulin production and modify the course of diabetes, potentially eliminating the need for exogenous insulin in some patients,” said Benjamin Charles, CEO of DiogenX.
“The successful closing of this financing and the strong consortium of biopharma and diabetes leaders bring DiogenX the funds and the expertise required to advance our lead program towards Phase 1 in type 1 diabetes patients.”
“DiogenX’s lead candidate has shown an unprecedented effect in beta cell regeneration in preclinical work. It is a potential breakthrough regenerative therapy aimed at restoring pancreatic function. We welcome the new investors and look forward to working together in this important next phase for DiogenX,” said Johannes Zanzinger, investment director at BIVF.