Gliknik Inc., a privately-held biopharmaceuticals company creating new therapies for cancer and immune/inflammatory disorders, announced on October 22 it has raised $4.9 million in Series B Financing. Baxter Ventures, an initiative created in 2011 by Baxter International Inc., led the Series B raise and is joined by existing investors. With the funding, Gliknik will further advance toward the clinic its IVIG-mimetic lead compound, GL-2045, from its first-in-class stradomer platform. Gliknik will study the compound in autoimmune conditions, including initially Myasthenia gravis (a neuromuscular disorder) and a variety of other neurological indications.
Through its stradomer program, Gliknik researchers have generated GL-2045, a recombinant Fc fusion protein that is designed to mimic the efficacy and safety of Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIG) in patients with autoimmune diseases. Gliknik is having GL-2045 contract manufactured for clinical studies scheduled to begin in late 2013. IVIG, which is used in the treatment of a variety of immune disorders, is produced through fractionated human plasma rather than by recombinant methods.
“Baxter is the leader in immunoglobulin therapy and has a detailed understanding of IVIG and the potential benefits of ultimately having a recombinant version,” said Gliknik CEO David S. Block. “With such a deep knowledge base, Baxter Ventures’ investment in Gliknik is a real vote of confidence in our scientific approach.”
Baxter International created Baxter Ventures to identify companies with promising products and/or therapies, and to provide them with the capital and expertise needed to drive innovation. LifeTech Developments Fund and numerous other existing Gliknik investors also are investing in the Series B Preferred Stock financing.
“This investment will help Gliknik advance its GL-2045 development program and determine whether recombinant peptides could potentially complement today’s plasma-derived IVIG therapies,” said Norbert G. Riedel, Ph.D., Corporate Vice President and Chief Science and Innovation Officer, Baxter International Inc. “Gliknik is advancing its drug portfolio in a time- and cost-efficient manner, and is conducting the kind of innovative work Baxter Ventures wants to invest in and be close to.”
In addition to using the funding to progress its lead IVIG-mimetic compound to the clinic, Gliknik will also use funds to advance its clinical immunomodulator compounds, which are currently in multiple-dose studies in patients with advanced cancers, including multiple myeloma and head and neck cancers. Gliknik immunomodulators are designed to train the immune system to target tumor cells bearing MAGE-A3 and HPV16 epitopes respectively.
About Gliknik Inc.
Founded in 2007, Gliknik is a biopharmaceuticals company creating new therapies for patients with cancer and immune disorders. Gliknik expertise is in modulation of the immune system to fight disease. In addition to the stradomerTM program for autoimmune diseases, Gliknik also has commercial rights to two cancer immunomodulator drugs that are in multiple-dose clinical trials in patients with advanced head and neck cancer and in patients with advanced multiple myeloma.