Apexigen to lay off 55% of staff

Feb. 27, 2023

California-based biotech Apexigen announced this week that it would let go of 55% of its employees as part of a corporate restructuring in an attempt to “maximize stockholder value.”

The company, which focuses on developing immuno-oncology therapeutics, is also exploring the potential for an acquisition, merger, sale and/or strategic transaction, enlisting Ladenburg Thalmann & Co. to help.

In Apexigen’s most recent SEC filing, the biotech shares that while its proprietary drug discovery platform APXiMAB has enabled it to develop therapeutic antibodies against a variety of molecular targets, the company has yet to receive regulatory approval for any of its drug candidates. “We have incurred net losses since inception and expect to continue to incur significant net losses for the foreseeable future. In addition, we may be unable to continue as a going concern,” the company said. 

The company went public last summer through a merger with Brookline Capital Acquisition, a special purpose acquisition company.

Apexigen’s lead asset, sotigalimab, is a potentially first-in-class CD40 agonist that is currently in clinical trials. The drug received orphan drug designation in 2021, and 129 patients were enrolled in a phase 2 clinical trial to investigate its efficacy and safety when given in combination with current standard-of-care therapy to patients with advanced soft tissue sarcoma.