VIB spin-off Flamingo Therapeutics merges with Dynacure to create leading RNA therapeutics company in oncology
VIB spin-off Flamingo Therapeutics and Dynacure announced today that both companies have signed a definitive merger agreement. The combined company will continue under the name Flamingo Therapeutics and will further pursue their positioning as a single leading RNA therapeutics company in oncology. Additionally, current investors Kurma Partners and PMV have made a further investment in the company.
Flamingo Therapeutics is a VIB spin-off company that was originally founded in 2020 based on pioneering work by Jean-Christophe Marine (VIB-KU Leuven Center for Cancer Biology) and Pieter Mestdagh (CRIG) in the field of lncRNAs. Bringing together Flamingo Therapeutics's and Dynacure’s expertise, the combined company will advance Flamingo’s lead programs.
The first program which Flamingo Therapeutics will continue to advance is Danvatirsen, an antisense oligonucleotide (ASO) that selectively targets STAT3 and has shown clinical activity in two Phase II clinical studies. The therapeutic effect of STAT3 suppression results in reduction of tumor cell growth as well as activation of anti-tumor immunity mediated by the tumor micro-environment. Currently, Danvatirsen is planned to continue Phase II clinical development for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma to advance the program through key clinical milestones and data readouts.
In addition, the combined company will also advance FTX-001, Flamingo’s most advanced LncRNA program which targets MALAT-1, through readiness for Phase I in solid tumors. LncRNA has been dubbed the dark matter of the human genome because not much is known about it. However, it proves to be a large class of innovative therapeutic targets.
Stephane van Rooijen, CEO of Flamingo Therapeutics: “The merger of Flamingo and Dynacure is a great strategic fit for both companies, leveraging a wealth of RNA therapeutic expertise and cancer drug development, and combining teams to create a stronger organization. With our well-defined clinical strategy and operational plan, we are focused on creating value for all stakeholders, including patients, clinicians and our investors. We plan to continue to execute upon our clinical strategy with the combined company and team in place.”