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Danish Galecto Inc. secures US$64m equity financing

Danish fibrosis and cancer specialist Galecto Inc. has raised US$64m in a Series B round led by Soleus Capital.

The financing round was co-led by Eir Ventures. Seed investor Novo Holdings, and new and existing investors such as OrbiMed, Ysios Capital, HBM Healthcare Investments, Sunstone Capital, Bristol Myers Squibb, Seventure, Maverick Ventures, Cormorant Asset Management, Janus Henderson Investors, Hadean Capital, Sphera, Asymmetry Capital Management and Canica, participated in the financing.

Galecto Inc. said the funds will be used to prepare the ground for an EU conditional approval for its inhaled lead compount GB0139, an EU and US orphan drug to treat idiopatic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and to set up three new Phase II tests by the end of 2020. Galecto is currently conducting a Phase IIb trial of its galectin-3 blocker GB0139 in IPF and plans to initiate Phase II studies of its oral galectin-3 blocker GB1211 in liver fibrosis in patients with non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) and of its LOXL2 blocker GB2064 in myelofibrosis.

Galectin-3 has been implicated in diseases of the lung, liver, eye and cardiovascular system amongst many others, where it can promote the development of tissue scarring (fibrosis) and inflammation. LOXL2, a key enzyme involved in the formation of the extracellular matrix during the fibrotic process, has been implicated in multiple fibrotic indications, including myelofibrosis and fibrotic diseases of the lung, liver and kidney.

In 2017, following completion of Phase Ib tests, Bristol Myers Squibbs returned an option to acquire GB0139 to the US-Danish Galecta Inc.