Rivus Pharmaceuticals Closes $132 Million Series B Financing to Advance HU6 for the Treatment of Obesity and Cardio-Metabolic Disorders

Funding led by RA Capital Management with participation from Bain Capital Life Sciences, BB Biotech AG and Series A investors Longitude Capital, Medicxi and RxCapital

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA., September 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Rivus Pharmaceuticals Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to improving cardiometabolic health, today announced the completion of a $132 million Series B financing led by RA Capital Management with participation from Bain Capital Life Sciences, BB Biotech AG and existing investors Longitude Capital, Medicxi and RxCapital. This funding will further support the clinical advancement of lead candidate HU6, a first-in-class Controlled Metabolic Accelerator (CMA) to treat cardiometabolic disease by addressing obesity, a major cause of disease.

Rivus Pharmaceuticals logo (PRNewsphoto/Rivus Pharmaceuticals, Inc.)

“We have an exceptional group of investors who share our vision of bringing a new class of treatments to patients with obesity and cardiometabolic diseases,” said Allen Cunningham, President and CEO of Rivus Pharmaceuticals. “Following encouraging data from our Phase 2a clinical trial in patients with obesity, this funding allows us to advance the development of HU6 and a pipeline of controlled metabolic accelerators to treat a range of cardiometabolic diseases.”

“RA Capital is pleased to lead this round to provide patients with a differentiated approach to more effectively treat obesity and cardiometabolic disease,” he said Derek Dirocco, Partner at RA Capital and new CEO. “While there have been several recent clinical successes in the treatment of obesity, CMAs alone in their ability to demonstrate significant fat reduction while sparing muscle mass stand for a very desirable profile, particularly in patients with diabetic myopathy and sarcopenia.”

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Almost half of American adults live with cardiovascular disease, conditions that affect a person’s health and quality of life. Obesity is a common cause of cardiometabolic disease, but weight loss through lifestyle changes remains a challenge for many patients. Rivus CMAs are designed to safely utilize mitochondrial uncoupling, a natural process that regulates and dissipates energy, to selectively reduce fat throughout the body. While numerous approaches are being explored to reduce energy intake in obesity, CMAs are unique in their focus on increasing energy expenditure, thereby avoiding the loss of skeletal muscle mass seen with other therapeutics.

Earlier this year, Rivus released data from a phase 2a metabolic study evaluating lead candidate HU6 in overweight participants. The study provided proof of concept that CMAs have the potential to treat not only obesity but a range of cardiometabolic diseases including heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF), type 2 diabetes and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)/non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH ).

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Key findings from the 8-week study include:

  • HU6 demonstrated significant reductions in liver, visceral, and total body fat while preserving skeletal muscle mass, all without changes in diet or exercise. Weight loss was enhanced in patients with elevated HbA1c.
  • The reduction in liver fat was 30% to 40% across doses and will be further quantified in a longer phase 2 B obesity study.
  • Patients treated with HU6 saw improvement in key cardiovascular and metabolic health indicators, including glycemic control, glycated albumin and HbA1c, reduction in blood pressure and markers of inflammation.
  • Both phase 1 and phase 2a metabolic data showed that HU6 was well tolerated across all doses and no serious adverse events (SAEs) or deaths were reported.

Rivus recently initiated a phase 2a study in overweight participants with heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) and plans to start a phase 2 B Obesity study including a subset of obese participants with type 2 diabetes in 2023.

About HU6 and CMAs
HU6 is a Controlled Metabolic Accelerator (CMA) that offers a novel, measured approach to activating mitochondrial uncoupling, a natural process in the body by which the body generates heat. By transporting protons from the mitochondrial intermembrane space, CMAs induce increased oxidation of sugars and fats while maintaining the same baseline production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Activating this process leads to the reduction of accumulated fat and sugar throughout the body.

About Rivus Pharmaceuticals
Rivus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a leader in mitochondrial biology, is dedicated to improving cardiometabolic health by advancing a new class of drugs, controlled metabolic accelerators (CMAs). Harnessing a natural metabolic process, CMAs target a significant risk factor for these diseases – obesity, the result of excess fat accumulation in the body. Rivus’ small molecule therapy, HU6, represents a tremendous opportunity to support patients on their journey to better health when faced with a broad spectrum of diseases, including obesity, heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) and type 2 -Diabetes and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)/nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Visit www.rivuspharma.com for more information.

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SOURCE Rivus Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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