HER2+ breast cancer with brain metastases
Project from 2015 Allocated sum 481 000,00 €
Precirix, a satellite of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) set up in 2014, combines a radioactive element (iodine, radium, lutetium, etc.) with llama nanobodies —an innovation developed by the VUB, which has led to numerous entrepreneurial initiatives including the extraordinary success of Ablynx.
When the complex penetrates tumour cells, the bond linking the antibody to the radioactive product breaks and the radioactive element irradiates the core of the targeted tumour. The nanobodies, which are chosen for their specificity, are therefore able to enter tumour cells and deliver a lethal dose of radiation.
The Foundation and three Belgian business angels worked closely together with the VUB and project leader Prof. Tony Lahoutte to enable Precirix to bring a Phase I trial of its flagship product, CAM-H2, to a successful conclusion in 2017. That same year, the Board of Directors appointed Ruth Devenyns Managing Director.
In 2018, Devenyns raised a series A round, one of the largest that year in Belgium in the biotech sector. This capital injection enabled Precirix to continue its Phase Ib/IIa and IIb clinical trials in HER2+ breast cancer with brain metastases.
These funds have also allowed it to launch the development of new products using the same platform.
For the Foundation, Precirix is yet another example of a project that illustrates its mission: helping researchers to become entrepreneurs and financing a development programme that delivers useful advances for patients and the medical community.