After a thorough process, the therapeutics start-up ADCendo has recently selected a lead candidate antibody-drug conjugate (ADC). The company is developing novel cancer treatment for a number of cancer indications with the strongest focus on soft-tissue sarcoma (STS), a cancer type occurring in many places in the body. Additional cancer types in scope include glioblastomas, which are found in the brain and osteosarcomas with are bone cancers.
In 2017, the company delivered an early proof of concept with a 100 percent cure rate of their cancer-bearing mice in the initial in vivo studies conducted at The Finsen Laboratory. Since then, the start-up has developed the technology, tested the efficacy and safety of several promising candidates, and worked on strengthening the business plan as well as established new key partnerships. In December 2019, the company welcomed a new Advisory Board chaired by John Lambert.
“The task of narrowing down from many promising lead candidates has taken a lot of effort. As a scientist, you always have a desire to investigate further, especially when the data is positive. Although we have several efficient and safe candidates, we are ready to choose our lead after thorough discussions with our partners and advisory board” says CTO of ADCendo, Christoffer Nielsen.
The start-up has been part of the Creation House program since the summer of 2019 and the team will now put additional focus on establishing partnerships and securing funding alongside the continued pre-clinical development.
“Considering the many positive trends currently emerging in the ADC field, we believe this is good timing. The number of ADCs that is approved for clinical use has doubled in just one year, and a large deal between Genmab and AbbVie partly based on ADC development was recently announced, demonstrating significant optimism towards ADCs.”, says Christoffer Nielsen.
ADCendo has chosen its candidate based on several animal models including data from advanced PDX cancer models and will continue to de-risk compounds and consolidate the target. The founding team consists of CSO Niels Behrendt, CTO Christoffer Nielsen, COO Lars Henning Engelholm, and CEO Henrik Stage. Henrik Stage was previously CEO of Santaris which was sold to Roche.
Additional team members are Scientific Project Managers Jette Lange and Sander van Putten, Research Scientist Camilla Dall, and BD consultant Joakim N. Sørensen.
“In less than a year in the Creation House program, ADCendo has managed to obtain an impressive in vivo data package in several mouse models. The data is solid, convincing and confirms the revival of conjugated antibodies as key to fight a variety of cancer indications”, says BII Senior Scientific Advisor, Hervør Lykke Olsen.