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Pyxis Oncology Raises $152M in Series B Financing

NEW YORK – Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Pyxis Oncology on Tuesday said it has raised $152 million in a Series B funding round that it will use to advance its antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) pipeline.

The financing was led by Arix Bioscience and RTW Investments, and included participation from new investors Perceptive Advisors, RA Capital Management, Pfizer Ventures, BVF Partners, Janus Henderson Investors, Cormorant Asset Management, HBM Healthcare Investments, funds managed by Tekla Capital Management, Acuta Capital Partners, Ridgeback Capital Investments, Surveyor Capital, Laurion Capital Management, Logos Capital, and LifeSci Venture Partners. Existing investors Leaps by Bayer, Longwood Fund, Agent Capital, and Ipsen also participated in this round, which combined with the money from an earlier Series A financing, brings the total amount raised by Pyxis to date to $174 million.

The company said it will use the proceeds to advance its portfolio of ADCs, which include PYX-201, PYX-202, and PYX-203.

Earlier this month, Pyxis paid Pfizer an undisclosed upfront sum for the licenses to PYX-201, an ADC that targets a novel tumor-restricted antigen in certain solid tumors, and PYX-203, a DNA-damaging agent that targets a well-validated tumor antigen expressed in some blood cancers. As part of this deal, Pfizer is entitled to milestone and tiered royalties based on the sales of the drugs. Pfizer, in turn, is making an equity investment in Pyxis through Pfizer Ventures and is supporting the development of other therapies by Pyxis using its ADC platform. 

Pyxis also recently in-licensed PYX-202 from LegoChem Biosciences, which targets a tumor cell surface antigen that is expressed in a range of solid tumors. The company has not yet disclosed the specific antigens targeted by these agents.

"This financing strengthens our ability to build a differentiated portfolio of biologics and allows us to accelerate our efforts to advance multiple promising programs into Phase I clinical trials," Pyxis CEO Lara Sullivan said in a statement.

In line with the Series B financing, Christian Schetter, managing director at Arix Bioscience, Gotham Makker, head of strategic investments at RTW Investments, and Chris O'Donnell, partner at Pfizer Ventures, will join the Pyxis board as directors.