Healthcare Industry News: Glaucoma
News Release - October 17, 2008
CeNeRx BioPharma Completes $15 Million Series B FinancingNew Funds Will Support Phase II Trial of Novel Antidepressant Tyrima(TM) and Advancement of Cannabinoid Compounds
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., Oct. 17 -- (Healthcare Sales & Marketing Network) -- CeNeRx BioPharma, Inc., a clinical stage company developing and commercializing innovative treatments for diseases of the central nervous system (CNS), today announced completion of a $15 million Series B financing. Existing investors Aisling Capital, L Capital Partners and Pappas Ventures participated in the funding round. CeNeRx plans to use the proceeds to conduct a Phase II clinical trial of its lead product candidate Tyrima(TM) for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD), to further characterize its novel preclinical cannabinoid pipeline and potentially to acquire additional development stage compounds targeted at CNS disorders.
"This successful Series B financing is a validation of the excellent progress we are making in advancing Tyrima, which we believe has the potential to be an important new option in the $15 billion antidepressant market," said Mark Baric, President of CeNeRx. "We appreciate the vote of confidence shown by our existing investors who all participated in the financing. These funds provide the resources we need to continue the positive momentum we have been achieving in our clinical and preclinical programs."
Tyrima is a selective and reversible member of a novel class of drugs known as RIMAs, or reversible inhibitors of monoamine oxidase A (MAO-A). In a separate press release issued today, CeNeRx announced the initiation of a Phase II clinical trial to evaluate the antidepressant efficacy of Tyrima in patients with MDD.
"We welcome this opportunity to invest in CeNeRx's progress as it begins a Phase II trial of Tyrima, which has the potential to be the first triple-action antidepressant with a safety profile appropriate for use by the many patients inadequately served by current treatments," said Steven A. Elms, CeNeRx Board Chairman and Managing Director at Aisling Capital. "We continue to be impressed by CeNeRx's commitment to excellence in advancing Tyrima into this well-designed Phase II clinical trial, and we look forward to supporting the company in this next stage of its development."
In addition to initiating its Phase II program for Tyrima, CeNeRx has recently completed successful preclinical studies of its selective cannabinoid compounds for the treatment of pain, Glaucoma and spasticity.
"This is an exciting time for CeNeRx as we become a mid-clinical stage company, and we are gratified that our investors recognize our clinical and commercial potential," said Barry Brand, Chief Executive Officer of CeNeRx. "Our commitment to developing innovative CNS products is exemplified by Tyrima, one of the select few novel compounds being developed for the underserved antidepressant market, and we are in early discussions with potential partners for our selective cannabinoids, which are showing promise preclinically in a number of CNS-related conditions. Proceeds from the Series B financing will help make continued progress in these programs possible. With our expanded resources and capabilities, we are now also seeking to apply our expertise to other novel CNS compounds addressing major unmet needs."
CeNeRx has worldwide rights to develop and commercialize Tyrima. This compound, which could be the first RIMA antidepressant available in the U.S. market, has patent protection beyond 2027.
About CeNeRx BioPharma
CeNeRx is a privately held clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing and commercializing innovative treatments for diseases of the central nervous system. CeNeRx's most advanced compound, a reversible inhibitor of monoamine oxidase, or RIMA, has entered Phase II development for the treatment of major depressive disorder. RIMAs may have efficacy advantages over current agents for depression and are expected to have a good safety profile. The company is also developing its pipeline of selective cannabinoid compounds that have recently completed successful preclinical proof-of-concept studies for the treatment of pain, Glaucoma and spasticity. More information about CeNeRx BioPharma can be found at www.cenerx.com.
About Aisling Capital
Aisling Capital is a dedicated life sciences private equity firm with US$1 billion under management. Headquartered in New York, Aisling Capital invests in both private and public companies utilizing a wide variety of investment structures. The Aisling Capital team is led by investment professionals with clinical, operational and financial experience, which allows the firm to identify, execute and realize investments across the life sciences industry. For more information, visit www.aislingcapital.com.
About L Capital Partners
L Capital Partners is a mid-size venture capital fund that invests in development and later-stage companies in the healthcare, technology and energy & environment sectors. L Capital Partners is a committed multi-round investor that supports each of its 15 portfolio companies with a team of partners, principals and associates who have deep industry and financial expertise. Established in 2004, L Capital Partners has offices in New York and Tel Aviv. For more information, visit www.lcapitalpartners.com.
About Pappas Ventures
Pappas Ventures is a Research Triangle Park, North Carolina-based venture capital firm that invests nationally in the life science industry. Founded in 1994, Pappas has over $250 million under management invested in more than 40 portfolio companies throughout North America. The firm's primary areas of focus include biotechnology, specialty pharmaceuticals, drug delivery, and medical devices. For more information, visit www.pappasventures.com.
Source: CeNeRx BioPharma
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