Affimed’s persistence with innate cell engagers finally gaining traction with investors
Affimed’s 15-plus year journey to investor buy-in for its innate cell engagers
Affimed’s first-in-class innate immune cell engagers are poised to provide immunotherapy efficacy with a broader therapeutic window.
NK cells have become one of the hottest topics in cancer over the past few years. But they are nothing new to Affimed, which has spent the majority of its 21-year history refining its innate cell engager platform.
Like most biotech stories, it hasn’t been a straight line from platform technology creation to clinical proof of concept. Early on, Affimed was developing T cell and innate cell engager formats in parallel, with early concerns about mediocre efficacy nearly sidelining the programs.
Coupled with Affimed’s roots in Germany, where financing has been difficult to come by for most biotechs, Affimed struggled at times to raise the necessary capital.
But its 2014 decision to be one of the first European biotechs to list directly on NASDAQ as its primary exchange has started to pay off. A marquee deal with Genentech Inc. in 2018 that tripled the company’s cash position came just a