Healthcare Industry News:  psoriasis 

Regenerative Medicine Dermatology Venture Capital

 News Release - February 3, 2009

Regenerative Medicine Company Garnet Biotherapeutics Raises $10.4 Million

MALVERN, PA--(Healthcare Sales & Marketing Network)--Feb 3, 2009 -- Garnet Biotherapeutics, a regenerative medicine company developing products that speed healing and reduce scarring after surgery or dermatologic procedures, today announced the close of a $10.4 million round led by SCP Vitalife Partners II, L.P. Garnet will use the proceeds to fund Phase II clinical trials of its proprietary human adult bone marrow-derived cells, as well as manufacturing and development. Safeguard Scientifics, Inc. and Alliance Technology Ventures also participated in the financing.

"This agreement provides us with financial resources to realize the potential of our cell-based therapy platform through a clear and defined clinical strategy. We view the participation of these stellar investors as a vote of confidence in the value of our technology and the commercial prospects of our product portfolio," said Gerri Henwood, CEO of Garnet Biotherapeutics. "One of the key challenges for cell-based therapy companies historically has been to scale-up and manufacture these products on a commercially viable basis. I am proud to say that our team has solved this problem and, at the appropriate time, we will be able to deliver these therapies efficiently and cost-effectively."

Garnet Biotherapeutics has identified the first in a series of cell products which it calls GBT 009, capable of reducing inflammation and promoting healing. In addition, the company has developed proprietary scalable cell manufacturing technology that has largely solved the challenge of commercial manufacturing scale up of patient doses from a single donor source.

"We're confident in the potential advantages of Garnet's emerging regenerative medicine technology, their strong clinical strategy and proven manufacturing capabilities," said Wayne B. Weisman, Managing Director at SCP Vitalife Partners. "The financing will allow them to fully capitalize on these strengths."

The company is initially developing its cell-based therapy for cosmetic and dermatologic applications where accelerated healing and reduced scarring are desirable, as plastic surgeons often cite scarring as a top patient concern in cosmetic surgical procedures. Cosmetic applications such as breast augmentation, abdominoplasty and facelifts represent a market opportunity of more than $1 billion worldwide. Garnet Biotherapeutics believes that the cell-based therapy may also be applicable for treatment of burns, auto-immune disorders such as psoriasis, and in other conditions where inflammation or scar formation plays an important role in disease pathology.

With this investment, Mr. Weisman, along with Gary J. Kurtzman, MD, Vice President and Managing Director in Safeguard's Life Sciences Group and Jim P. O'Connell, Senior Associate and Kauffman Fellow in Safeguard's Life Sciences Group will join Ms. Henwood on Garnet Biotherapeutics' Board of Directors.

About Garnet Biotherapeutics

Garnet Biotherapeutics is a clinical stage regenerative medicine company based in Malvern, PA. Garnet cell-product GBT 009, when used topically on the skin or administered internally, releases anti-inflammatory and pro-healing factors that accelerate healing and reduce scarring. The company is currently targeting dermatology applications, with plans to expand into other reconstructive and cosmetic procedures as well as looking at ways to advance the technology for use in orthopedic and cardiovascular surgical procedures, burn treatment, chronic wound healing and auto-immune disorders. For more information, please visit

About SCP Vitalife Partners II

SCP Vitalife Partners II, L.P., is a venture capital fund which invests in life science companies. The Fund, managed by SCP Vitalife Partners, focuses on Israel- and U.S.-based firms where the opportunity provides attractive proprietary growth potential, has requisite management talent and appropriate valuation. Like its predecessor fund, Vitalife Life Sciences Fund, L.P., SCP Vitalife II invests primarily in companies with breakthrough technologies for medical devices, diagnostics, imaging, drug delivery, specialty pharmaceuticals, biomaterials, and supply chain management. In addition to the traditional venture capital role of assisting and advising its companies, SCP Vitalife Partners has a strong track record of using its senior level relationships at industry companies to achieve strategic partnership deals and liquidity opportunities for its portfolio companies. SCP Vitalife Partners has offices in Tel Aviv and Philadelphia. For more information, please visit

About Safeguard Scientifics

Founded in 1953 and based in Wayne, PA, Safeguard Scientifics, Inc. (NYSE:SFE ) provides growth capital for entrepreneurial and innovative technology and life sciences companies. Safeguard targets technology companies in Software as a Service (SaaS) / Internet-based Businesses, Technology-Enabled Services and Vertical Software Solutions, and life sciences companies in Molecular and Point-of-Care Diagnostics, Medical Devices and Specialty Pharmaceuticals with capital requirements between $5 and $50 million. Safeguard participates in expansion financings, corporate spin-outs, management buyouts, recapitalizations, industry consolidations and early-stage financings. For additional information and updates about Safeguard Scientifics, please visit

About Alliance Technology Ventures

Alliance Technology Ventures (ATV) is a venture capital firm focused on private company investments in the semiconductor, communication component and life science industries. Founded in 1993, ATV is based in Sarasota, FL, with venture partners in Boston and Palo Alto, CA. With over $250 million under management, ATV actively seeks to invest in companies that fit its investment criteria. For more information, please visit

Source: Garnet Biotherapeutics

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