ProCertus BioPharm Inc., a Madison, Wisc.-based developer of drugs to treat the side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy on cancer patients, has raised $2.1 million in new VC funding. Return backers include Novartis Venture Fund and Venture Investors LLC.
ProCertus BioPharm, Inc., an oncology-based pharmaceutical company developing therapeutics to protect cancer patients from the side effects of radiotherapy and chemotherapy, announced that its collaborators at the University of Wisconsin – Madison have begun enrolling patients in a clinical trial designed to determine if ProCertus’ product, DermX, can prevent radiodermatitis caused by radiation therapy. The trial is being conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Paul P. Carbone Comprehensive Cancer Center (UWCCC) under the direction of Drs. James Cleary and Deepak Khuntia.
ProCertus also announced today that it has closed on an additional $2.1 million financing. Current investors Novartis Venture Fund (NVF) and Venture Investors LLC (VI) led the financing, along with participation from other existing investors. The proceeds from the financing will be used to fund a number of clinical trials for ProCertus.
“We are very pleased that NVF and VI are providing the additional funding required to conduct these first clinical studies with cancer patients; their participation in this round of funding is an important vote of confidence in the ability of our technology to make the lives of cancer patients easier,” said William Fahl, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, Chairman and Founder of ProCertus. “We are also pleased that Drs. Cleary and Khuntia, and their clinical colleagues at the UWCCC, are performing these studies. They have worked closely with us to identify radiotherapy patient populations in which the efficacy of our drug candidates can easily be identified.” Fahl is a Professor of Oncology at the McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research, which is part of the UWCCC.
“ProCertus has a novel approach to addressing serious unmet medical needs among cancer patients,” added Paul Weiss, PhD, acting CEO of ProCertus and Managing Director at VI. “It is our hope that ProCertus technologies will help clinicians manage the side effects of radiation and chemotherapy, improve patient quality of life, and in some cases prevent patients from choosing not to have treatment due to the severity of the side effects associated with that therapy. We developed an efficient development path for these products, so it is our aim that this additional funding will bring these products closer to commercialization.”
BioPharm ProCertus, based in Madison, Wisconsin, is an oncology-based pharmaceutical company whose primary mission is to protect cancer patients against the side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy. ProCertus has established proof of concept in animal models for its product candidates, DermX, ProDermaCel™, and OralX, proprietary pharmaceuticals designed to reduce or eliminate the side effects associated with cancer therapy. ProDermaCel™ will protect cancer patients from chemotherapy- and radiotherapy-induced alopecia (hair loss), DermX will prevent radiotherapy-induced dermatitis (skin burn), and OralX will protect against chemotherapy- and radiotherapyinduced oral mucositis. For additional information about the company, visit www.procertus.com.