NEW YORK, Sept. 29, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Spring Mountain Capital, LP, a New York-based investment management firm, announced today that its private equity group structured and led a financing round for Oncoceutics, Inc. with additional private investors' participation. The private placement was substantially oversubscribed.
Oncoceutics will use the proceeds of the financing in conjunction with non-dilutive grant awards, public-private partnerships and academic alliances to accelerate the early clinical development (Phase I and Phase II) of its lead product, ONC201. The Company has a robust program of Phase I/II protocols for ONC201 that will enroll more than 150 patients with leukemia, lymphoma and solid tumors and that will be conducted at leading cancer centers in the US. Oncoceutics is also preparing additional clinical studies in Europe. Given the promise of the compound and its first-in-class structure, the Company has also launched a dedicated program on analogs for certain indications that is substantially supported by a previously announced SBIR grant.
"We believe that Oncoceutics' lead compound ONC201 has the breakthrough potential to change medical practice in oncology," said Raymond Wong, Managing Director and Head of Private Equity at SMC, who is joining the Company's Board of Directors. "Oncoceutics' management team has a proven track record of successfully developing new oncology drugs. Their expertise, resources and network of preeminent leaders in oncology has them poised to deliver to patients in need," Wong added.
"The closing of this funding round represents an important endorsement of our development strategy," said Wolfgang Oster, MD, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Oncoceutics. "Combined with a series of recent validations by academic, government, and other private institutions that believe in the transformative potential of ONC201, the new funding positions Oncoceutics to conduct an aggressive R&D program over the next two years," he added.
"We have studied ONC201 extensively at our institution and reached the conclusion that this compound is orthogonal to any oncology drug that has entered the market so far," said Michael Andreeff, MD, PhD, Chief, Section of Molecular Hematology and Therapy and Haas Chair in Genetics at MD Anderson Cancer Center and member of Oncoceutics' Scientific Advisory Board. "We are excited to participate in the clinical assessment of this novel drug," Dr. Andreeff stated.
"It has been a thrill to see the rapid entry into the clinic of the first-in-class ONC201 therapeutic that targets signaling pathways critical for broad and effective tumor treatment," said Wafik El-Deiry, MD, PhD, FACP, the Scientific Founder of Oncoceutics. "This is very rare to see for technologies arising in academia, and is in no uncertain terms due to the superb senior executive, business and managerial leadership of Oncoceutics that have collectively done an amazing job of making this happen in a competitive climate with numerous regulatory and financial hurdles. As a physician-scientist, it is exciting for me to be part of the basic and translational development of a new therapeutic for cancer." Dr. El-Deiry is presently the Chief of the Hematology-Oncology Division at Penn State University and Penn State College of Medicine, and Associate Director for Translational Research at Penn state Hershey Cancer Institute.
ABOUT SPRING MOUNTAIN CAPITAL, LP
Founded in 2001 and located in New York, Spring Mountain Capital, LP (SMC) is a private investment management firm that focuses on alternative asset investing and offers investors a wide range of strategies designed to produce attractive risk-adjusted returns. SMC has a dynamic and opportunistic mindset with a client-oriented focus that drives it toward providing investors with intelligent and sophisticated investment opportunities. The private equity group at SMC makes growth equity investments in small capitalization companies. Its "investing in the gaps" philosophy capitalizes on market dislocations, information asymmetry, illiquidity and complexity. It seeks to invest in opportunities created by breakthrough innovations, paradigm shifts, or fundamental market or behavioral changes.
ABOUT ONCOCEUTICS, INC.
Oncoceutics, Inc. is a drug discovery and development company targeting the most potent suppressor pathways in human cancer. The Company's leadership team represents a group of drug development executives with unparalleled success in the industry. Central to Oncoceutics' scientific and technology base is a focus on drug discovery that engages natural potent tumor suppressor pathways. The first lead compound that came out of this program is ONC201, a small molecule that possesses significant anti-tumor activity in a number of different types of human cancer through a unique mechanism of action. On February 28, 2014 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration accepted the Company's Investigational New Drug (IND) application for the Phase I/II trials of ONC201, and the Company expects to begin clinical trials before the end of the year.
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SOURCE Spring Mountain Capital, LP