Merck-partnered Janux Therapeutics files for a $100M IPO

May 21, 2021

Janux Therapeutics, a preclinical biotech developing a novel class of T cell engagers for cancer, has filed with the SEC to raise up to $100 million in an initial public offering.

The La Jolla, CA-based company, founded in 2017, is developing next-generation therapeutics based on its proprietary Tumor Activated T Cell Engager (TRACTr) platform technology to better treat patients suffering from cancer. Its initial focus is on developing a novel class of T cell engagers, and its lead candidates are designed to target clinically validated drug targets.

Last December, Janux and Merck announced a partnership granting Merck exclusive worldwide license to products and intellectual property developed from the collaboration. The companies did not disclose financial terms other than to state that Janux could earn up to $500.5 million in upfront and milestone payments for each of the two targets selected by Merck, plus royalties from commercialized product sales.

Janux expects to submit at least two INDs by the end of 2022, initially seeking regulatory approval for its candidates as later lines of therapy in patients with cancer. Currently, the only T cell engager on the market is Amgen’s Blincyto, which is approved for certain types of leukemia.