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Engitix Announces $54m Series A Financing and a Strategic Collaboration with Dompé Farmaceutici Using Exscalate’s AI Supercomputing Power to Advance its Drug Discovery Pipeline in Fibrosis and Cancer

Engitix Announces $54m Series A Financing and a Strategic Collaboration with Dompé Farmaceutici Using Exscalate’s AI Supercomputing Power to Advance its Drug Discovery Pipeline in Fibrosis and Cancer

  • $54m series A financing co-led by existing investor Netherton Investments (a fund investing on behalf of  Mike Platt) and new investor Dompé farmaceutici S.P.A (an Italian and US-based biopharmaceutical company)
  • Multi-year, multi-programme strategic collaboration with Dompé will support Engitix’s transition to a biopharmaceutical product company
  • Dompé will provide access to its Exscalate AI drug discovery platform and drug discovery facilities, in exchange for milestones (including additional equity) and royalties
  • Engitix retains full control over its assets and programmes in fibrosis and cancer
  • Mike Platt, co-founder and Managing Director of BlueCrest Capital and Gianluca Rossetti, Corporate Business Development Director at Dompé join the Engitix board of directors

London, UK – 19 January, 2022 – Engitix Ltd (‘Engitix’), a biopharmaceutical company with a pioneering and proprietary human extracellular matrix (ECM) drug target discovery platform today announced the close of its $54m Series A financing as well as a strategic collaboration with Dompé farmaceutici S.P.A (“Dompé”).

The round was co-led by existing investor Netherton Investments, a fund investing on behalf of Mike Platt, and included new investor Dompé, an Italian and US-based biopharmaceutical company. Following the financing, Mike Platt, the highly successful fund manager and co-founder and Managing Director of BlueCrest Capital Management and Gianluca Rossetti, Corporate Business Development Director at Dompé, have joined Engitix’s board of directors.

The agreement with Dompé, a biopharmaceutical company with next-generation chemo- and bioinformatic tools and an AI-driven drug discovery platform to deliver precision engineered medicines, includes both equity investment and a multi-year, multi-programme strategic R&D collaboration to support identification of new treatments against fibrosis and liver-associated solid tumours. 

Engitix has established a portfolio of internal programmes in primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC), adenocarcinoma (PDAC) and liver metastasis, and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), as well as partnered drug discovery programmes in fibrosis and solid tumours using its ECM platform.

Dompé will provide direct access to facilities, resources and expertise including its Exscalate structure-based drug design platform that exploits the capabilities of the Italian supercomputer center, CINECA, to accelerate its own drug discovery and development. The deal is ground-breaking as Engitix retains full control over its assets and programmes enabling it to transition from a technology platform to a biopharmaceutical product company, with Dompé being an important shareholder and eligible for clinical and commercial milestones and royalties on marketed products developed under the collaboration. 

Marcello Allegretti, CSO of Dompé said, “Our mission is to improve people's lives and we partner with the best academic and industrial groups to accelerate the research that will bring new solutions to patients' unmet needs. We look forward to working with the Engitix team to combine the power of Exscalate with Engitix’s deep understanding of the biology of the fibrosis and solid tumours microenvironment and the unique strength of its ECM platform. Our collaboration will enable us to accelerate the clinical translation of targets beyond our four key in-house therapeutic areas of ophthalmology, metabolic disorders, oncology, and pain management.”

The financing will be used to invest in Engitix’s internal drug discovery pipeline through IND-enabling studies, expand its ECM discovery platform and bioinformatics capabilities into new therapeutic areas, and to expand its team, facilities and operations.

Alongside its internal pipeline, Engitix will seek to expand its pharma and biotech collaborations. It has an exclusive license agreement with Takeda in Non-Alcoholic SteatoHepatitis (NASH) and liver fibrosis worth more than $500m biodollars, and a previous partnership with Morphic Therapeutics in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Dr Giuseppe Mazza co-founder and CEO of Engitix said, “This financing and new partnership with Dompé  enables us to continue our evolution from a platform to multi-asset mutli-programmes pre-clinical stage company and to continue to prove the value of our human ECM platform. We are pleased to have the continued backing of Mike Platt, and to have secured the support of Dompé as a partner and investor. This round will enable us to advance our pre-clinical programmes against targets identified using our ECM platform through candidate selection and IND-enabling studies.”

Mike Platt said, “I am prepared to take a risk and invest in innovative technology early, backing highly passionate teams with strong leadership. Having invested from the start, Engitix’s progress and achievements within less than two years from its seed financing have been impressive. The value of Engitix’s platform has been proven through the partnerships it has established and the pipeline of opportunities it has built. The collaboration with Dompé propels it to the next stage and I look forward to working with the board and investors to maximise Engitix’s full potential.”

In 2020 Engitix moved its headquarters to London’s WestWorks, White City Place (WCP), a growing campus of life sciences companies including a number of biotech and global pharma organisations notably GammaDelta Therapeutics, Autolus and Synthace, as well as Novartis. The Company plans to acquire more laboratory and office space to support its expansion to around 80 full time employees and to establish a fully integrated automated laboratory for high throughput screening (HTS) using its ECM platform.

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Last Updated: 19-Jan-2022