NEW YORK – Sermonix Pharmaceuticals said on Monday that it has raised $40 million, which it will put toward further advancing lasofoxifene as a treatment for patients with ESR1-mutated metastatic breast cancer.
Specifically, Sermonix closed a series A3 financing round led by Perceptive Xontogeny Ventures Fund II — two of whose partners will join Sermonix's board of directors — with participation from existing investors. The firm plans to put the financing toward advancing lasofoxifene through late-stage clinical development.
The agent, a selective estrogen receptor modulator, is designed to provide an additional option to patients with estrogen receptor (ER)-positive, HER2-negative breast cancer who develop resistance to existing endocrine therapies.
Sermonix is currently evaluating lasofoxifene in two Phase II trials dubbed ELAINE 1 and ELAINE 2. In ELAINE 1, the firm is randomizing roughly 100 previously treated ER-positive, HER2-negative advanced breast cancer patients harboring ESR1 mutations to receive either lasofoxifene or standard-of-care fulvestrant. In ELAINE 2, meanwhile, the firm is evaluating lasofoxifene combined with the CDK4/6 inhibitor abemaciclib (Eli Lilly's Verzenio).
Sermonix expects to report top-line data from both trials during the first half of 2022.
In April, Sermonix announced that in partnership with the Huntsman Cancer Institute it would also evaluate lasofoxifene for ESR1-mutated endometrial cancer.