Clarametyx raises $33M to develop non-antibiotic CF treatment

CMTX-101 will aim to treat patients with persistent bacterial lung infections

Andrea Lobo, PhD avatar

by Andrea Lobo, PhD |

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A coin is poised over the money slot of a pig-shaped piggy bank.

Clarametyx Biosciences has completed a $33 million financing round to support its development of CMTX-101, a non-antibiotic treatment candidate for persistent bacterial infections in people with cystic fibrosis (CF).

The funding contributed to the start of a Phase 1b/2a clinical trial of CMTX-101 as an adjunct therapy to standard-of-care antibiotics. It aims to help treat CF patients with Pseudomonas aeruginosa lung infections.

In addition to new support from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the Series A financing round was led by the Ohio Innovation Fund, with participation from Clarametyx’s current investors Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Rev1 Ventures, JobsOhio Growth Capital, C Bio Investors, and the 1776 Fund.

“We are especially grateful for the support of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to evaluate this technology’s promise to improve the lives of people with cystic fibrosis, a population particularly vulnerable to persistent bacterial infections,” David Richards, Clarametyx’s CEO, said in a press release.

“We believe this research will further support the broad applicability of this first-in-class technology,” Richards added.

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All patients dosed with virus-based therapy for P. aeruginosa infections

Phase 1b/2a trial to test CF treatment candidate CMTX-101 in 41 adults

CF is caused by mutations in the CFTR gene, resulting in the abnormal accumulation of thick and sticky mucus in the body’s organs, particularly in the lungs, pancreas, liver, and intestine. Mucus buildup provides a fertile breeding ground for bacteria, with patients commonly experiencing recurrent lung infections — chiefly caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa, typically called P. aeruginosa.

Treating such infections usually involves antibiotics. However, bacteria can develop resistance to antibiotics if these medications are administered frequently or for too long, which limits treatment effectiveness.

“Global health authorities continue to raise alarms about persistent bacterial infections and the rise in antimicrobial resistance associated with overuse of antibiotics,” said William Baumel, managing director of the Ohio Innovation Fund.

“There is a clear and urgent need for novel technologies that can enhance the effectiveness of today’s antibiotics to address these challenging infections,” Baumel said, calling Clarametyx’s technology “a compelling strategy.”

CMTX-101 uses a non-antibiotic approach licensed from Nationwide Children’s Hospital. It’s based on antibodies that target and remove linchpin proteins, which are present in bacterial biofilms. These protective structures are formed by bacteria stuck to each other and to a surface, where they work as a functional community and become more resistant to antibiotics.

The goal is to lead to the rapid collapse of the biofilm, rendering bacteria more vulnerable to the body’s immune response or to antibiotics, while decreasing inflammation. This anti-biofilm technology is being evaluated both as a treatment and as a preventive strategy, addressing persistent bacterial infection and antibiotic resistance.

There is a clear and urgent need for novel technologies that can enhance the effectiveness of today’s antibiotics to address these challenging infections.

The Phase 1b/2a trial (NCT06159725), launched in December 2023, is expected to recruit 41 adults with CF. If they’re receiving Trikafta, patients may be eligible if they are on a stable dose for at least three months.

In the first part of the study, all participants will receive a single dose of intravenous or into-the-vein CMTX-101. In Part 2, patients will be randomly assigned to receive either CMTX-101 or a placebo.

The trial’s primary goal is to assess the safety and tolerability of CMTX-101. It also will evaluate the treatment’s pharmacokinetics – its movement into, through, and out of the body – as well as the immune response triggered by CMTX-101 and any reduction in pulmonary P. aeruginosa burden.

“This successful [money] raise enables us to expand our clinical evaluations of a platform that we believe will address critical unmet needs in infectious disease management,” Richards said.