An introduction to EpiAxis Therapeutics
EpiAxis Therapeutics is a leading epigenetic translational drug discovery company with a focus on the prevention of metastatic disease. This is achieved by targeting the pivotal enzyme system controlling the proliferation of circulating tumour cells (CTC), cancer stem cells (CSC) and the reinvigoration of immune cells. This system is the nuclear bound, epigenetic enzyme, lysine-specific demethylase 1 (LSD1).
EpiAxis was formed to maximize the commercial value of this proven and pioneering research and to establish partnerships with leading pharmaceutical companies seeking to help develop a novel and effective new class of anti-metastatic cancer drugs.
Established in 2015, the company won the BioPharma Best Pitch in 2016, was also runner-up for Most Investable Company and won the BioEurope Startup Slam in the same year.
EpiAxis received ethics approval for its Phase 1B clinical trial in March 2017 and recruited the First Patient In (FPI) into its Phase1B clinical trial in October 2017. Clinical trial sites to SMDCC in Wollongong and Liverpool Cancer Therapy Centre in Liverpool were added in December 2018.
The company has a new clinical program based on its family of proprietary, non-catalytic inhibitors, which comprise an optimised family of peptidomimetic inhibitors, with both linear and cyclised variants. These assets have been developed through the work of founding scientist Professor Sudha Rao, a leading epigenetic researcher.
These first in class inhibitors, were developed following Professor Rao’s discovery of the unique nuclear pocket within the cellular localization sequence of LSD1, which is responsible for its nuclear entry. The company has since crystallized this novel pocket and has identified lead candidates, which include EPI-112, a highly optimised cyclic peptide version of its highly efficacious EPI-111, a linear peptide with an identical sequence. This pocket forms an important part of the EPI-110 series’ novel mode of action.
EpiAxis is currently privately funded.