Rivus CEO Allen Cunningham/courtesy of Rivus Prescribed drugs
Rivus Prescribed drugs raised $132 million in a Collection B financing spherical, the corporate revealed Thursday. Proceeds will likely be used to advance the event of HU6, a brand new class of drug designed to deal with cardio-metabolic illness by addressing weight problems.
Rivus CEO Allen Cunningham informed BioSpace the financing will allow it to advance HU6 deeper into the clinic and discover extra indications that influence tens of millions of People.
HU6 is a Managed Metabolic Accelerator (CMA), a brand new class of medication that gives a novel, measured method to activating mitochondrial uncoupling, a pure course of by which the physique generates warmth.
The remedy has demonstrated vital fats discount whereas sparing muscle mass in scientific trials.
It additionally has the potential to deal with a spread of cardio-metabolic illnesses, together with coronary heart failure, kind 2 diabetes and Nonalcoholic fatty liver illness (NAFLD).
The CDC estimates the weight problems fee in the US to be about 42%. Weight problems is a major driver in a number of illness indications, together with cardiac illness, diabetes and sure forms of most cancers.
In line with firm knowledge, CMAs enhance the oxidation of sugars and fat whereas on the similar time sustaining the baseline manufacturing of adenosine triphosphate, which supplies the vitality that drives many mobile processes, reminiscent of muscle contraction. Triggering this course of ends in the discount of gathered fats and sugars all through the physique.
Cunningham famous there have been developments made within the growth of prescription drugs geared toward treating weight problems.
These embody Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy, which obtained the inexperienced gentle from the FDA final yr, and Eli Lilly’s Mounjaro (tirzepatide), a diabetes drug that causes weight discount in sufferers.
Whereas these medicine successfully scale back weight in sufferers, Cunningham mentioned Rivus’ CMAs stand alone of their potential to considerably scale back fats whereas sparing muscle mass.
A Busy 15 Months
The final 15 months have been busy for Rivus. The corporate formally launched in July 2021 with $35 million from a Collection A financing spherical.
Earlier this yr, Rivus introduced constructive knowledge from a Section IIa examine assessing HU6 in overweight sufferers. After eight weeks of therapy, HU6 generated vital reductions in liver, visceral and complete physique fats whereas sustaining skeletal muscle mass. This led to vital reductions in complete physique weight.
Shaharyar Khan, chief scientific officer of Rivus, famous this was an vital revelation. He informed BioSpace Wednesday that a number of weight loss plan plans specializing in diminished caloric consumption negatively influence muscle mass. A lack of muscle mass hampers fats loss, which he mentioned usually causes a “yo-yo impact” the place the load goes up and down.
For the Section IIa examine, Khan mentioned sufferers had been informed to not change their habits when it got here to consuming or train. Rivus wished to keep away from introducing any new behavioral intervention that might skew the information.
After the eight weeks, sufferers who obtained HU6 recorded between a 2% and a pair of.5% lack of fats.
“Our sufferers had been burning fats with none change in weight loss plan or habits,” Khan mentioned. “[They] had been shedding visceral fats, subcutaneous fats and liver fats. All these elements had been being seen whereas skeletal muscle mass was being preserved.”
In a deliberate IIb examine, Rivus will embody dietary interventions alongside HU6. The examine is anticipated to start in 2023 and can encompass a subset of overweight contributors with kind 2 diabetes.
Within the Section IIa examine, probably the most vital reductions in weight and physique fats had been noticed in sufferers with excessive baseline HbA1c ranges, Cunningham famous.
Rivus additionally intends to provoke one other Section IIa examine in overweight contributors with coronary heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF).
Cunningham mentioned sufferers within the early Section IIa weight problems examine noticed enchancment in key cardiovascular and metabolic well being indicators. This contains glycemic management, glycated albumin and HbA1c, discount in blood strain and inflammatory markers.
The Collection B spherical was led by RA Capital Administration and supported by Bain Capital Life Sciences, BB Biotech AG, in addition to current buyers Longitude Capital, Medicxi and RxCapital.