French venture fund bets on Japanese microbiome firm with €11.6 m investment
The Japanese firm is developing novel genetically enhanced bacteria for medical applications – specifically aimed at fighting tumours.
The investment is alongside a number of Japanese investors and Novartis Pharma, Seventure Partners confirmed.
Anaeropharma’s lead product APS001F (based on obligate anaerobic bacterium Bifidobacterium longum) can only grow in the hypoxic core of solid tumors, where it secretes the enzyme cytosine deaminase turning a systemically administered prodrug into a cytotoxic agent, which hollows out the tumor from the inside.
“There is a huge market opportunity for novel treatments that harness the specific capabilities of microbiome-derived bacteria,” said Isabelle de Cremoux, CEO and Managing Partner of Seventure Partners. “Anaeropharma Science is developing a pioneering approach to the cancer therapy, which may powerfully complement other axes of modern oncology research.”
The Company is currently conducting a Phase 1b/2a trial of APS001F in patients with advanced solid tumours in the U.S.