Finch Closes $90 Million Series D to Advance C. Difficile Infection Product
Finch Therapeutics, based in Somerville, Massachusetts, closed a $90 million Series D financing. The round was joined by new investor Baupost Group, Humboldt Fund, MSD Capital, MSD Partners, Octave Group, and OMX Ventures. Existing investors included Avenir Growth Capital, OCV Partners, Shumway Capital, SIG, SymBiosis, TPTF, and Willett Advisors.
The company plans to use the funds to advance its lead candidate CP101 for recurrent C. difficile infection through the final stages of clinical development and regulatory submission. It will also leverage the funds to advance its platform and pipeline, including launching a Phase Ib trial of FIN-211 for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and CP101 for chronic hepatitis B (HBV).
Finch focuses on development of therapeutics related to the human microbiome. The microbiome is the trillions of microorganisms that live in the human body. They are increasingly being found to have an effect not just on gastrointestinal indications, such as C. diff infections, but numerous others.
On June 19, the company announced positive topline data from PRISM3, it’s Phase II trial of CP101, which is an oral microbiome drug, for prevention of recurrent C. diff infection. The trial met the primary efficacy endpoint, with 74.5% of recurrent CDI patients who received a single dose of CP101 achieving a sustained clinical cure through week eight. The drug is designed to deliver complete microbiome communities in an oral, enteric release capsule.
PF101 has received both Fast Track and Breakthrough Therapy designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for prevention of recurrent C. diff infection.
Of the financing, Mark Smith, Finch’s chief executive officer, said, “We are delighted to have the support of this strong syndicate to advance our platform and pipeline. The microbiome field is at an exciting inflection point, with recent positive clinical data from our trial in recurrent C. difficile and other clinical data suggesting that microbiome drugs may become the next major therapeutic class to transform patient care.”
In late 2019, Finch and Takeda Pharmaceutical Company expanded a collaboration to develop microbiome-based therapeutics based on Finch’s Human-First Discovery platform. Under the terms of the deal, the two companies will use the platform to target Crohn’s disease, a form of inflammatory bowel disease.
The Human-First Discovery platform allows development of Full-Spectrum Microbiota (FSM) therapies. These contain a diverse community of microbiota from human donors. It also enables Rationally-Selected Microbiota (RSM) therapies that contain select bacterial strains that are grown in pure culture, but have been associated with favorable clinical outcomes in human microbiota transplantation studies.
The first RSM product is FIN-524 for ulcerative colitis.
Nick Haft, managing director of OMX Ventures, stated, “By starting their discovery process with insights mined from clinical data, Finch is pioneering a new and very promising approach to drug discovery. Recurrent C. difficile is only the tip of the iceberg, with dozens of proof-of-concept human microbiota transplantation studies demonstrating the potential of this approach for a wide variety of indications. With their platform, Finch is uniquely positioned to translate many of these exciting insights into promising new microbiome therapies.”