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ADCendo ApS raises €51m in Series A financing

Danish ADCendo ApS will use the funds from a Series A investment to advance Antibody-Drug Conjugates (ADCs) entering cancer cells through endocytic receptors.

The investment into the spin-off company from the BioInnovation Institute (BII) in Copenhagen was led by Novo Seeds and Ysios Capital, along with RA Capital Management, HealthCap and Gilde Healthcare. The proceeds from this largest Series A financing for a Danish biotech company ever will be used to establish a pipeline of ADCs directed at highly cancer-selective endocytic receptors. The company will use it to generate data on its lead programme targeting uPARAP/Endo180 to provide proof of the new cancer concept in patients.

The uPARAP protein is overexpressed on the cell surface of several tumour entities such as soft tissue sarcoma, glioblastoma multiforme, triple-negative breast cancers, leukemia and osteosarcoma, as well as on stromal cells of prostate, breast and pancreatic cancers. Being a constitutively active collagen scavenger receptor that  highly efficiently internalise its ligand, it has been demonstrated in preclinical in vitro and in vivo tests to play a role in tumour invasion. Its putative function as a cancer-related “drug internalisation pump” will be exploited to selectively target ADCs and its toxic payload into malignant tissue.

ADCendo ApS was built on research conducted by Niels Behrendt, Lars Henning Engelholm and Christoffer Nielsen from The Finsen Laboratory of Rigshospitalet and the University of Copenhagen, as well as by the previous CEO/CFO of Santaris Pharma, Henrik Stage. ADCendo has been supported by Novo Seeds since 2017. As part of the financing, Jeroen Bakker, Principal at Novo Seeds, will join the Board.