Recurv Pharma Inc. is receiving up to $24 million in funding from TVM Capital Life Science through its TVM Life Science Innovation II SCSp fund.
Recurv Pharma plans to develop a novel taxane therapy to treat solid tumors to the proof-of-concept stage.
The U.S. based biotech firm is the eighth early-stage or project-focused company (PFC) investment for the TVM Life Science Innovation II Fund.
James E. Egan, CEO of Recurv Pharma, said: “TVM’s investment is designed to get us to a key value inflection point, namely, phase 2a proof-of-concept, with our cancer program, RP-001. Taxanes have been a cornerstone of cancer treatment for decades, but they can come with significant side effects, and treated cancers frequently recur. We are looking to provide a safer, more efficacious treatment option that may be used in combination with immunotherapies and in a far wider range of cancers, even those resistant to current taxanes. We are excited to have TVM’s strong support and to now have the resources to further the development of this potentially game-changing molecule.”
For its PFC investments, TVM has an arrangement with Eli Lilly and Company, which is a limited partner in TVM LSI II and the earlier fund TVM LSI I. Through the arrangement, TVM and its PFCs can engage Chorus, a full-service autonomous research and development unit within Lilly, to assist the PFC by implementing a drug development plan, resulting in data packages to help determine proof of concept.
Recurv Pharma’s RP-001 is a new chemical entity (NCE) delivered in a nano-emulsion formulation that focuses the drug delivery to the tumor, sparing healthy organs. The molecule has demonstrated the ability to kill tumors even in multi-drug resistant cancers, with strong efficacy in various pre-clinical tumor models, including non-small cell lung, breast, ovarian, prostate, pancreatic and colorectal cancers.
It has also been proven in preclinical models to cure tumor types that are resistant to current taxane treatments. The data have shown that RP-001 can effectively kill cancer stem cells, the cells that trigger recurrence, and toxicology studies suggest a potentially superior safety profile compared to taxanes currently on the market.
Additionally, RP-001 was demonstrated to be synergistic with immune checkpoint inhibitors in a pancreatic cancer model.