Tyrogenex, a biotech firm based in West Palm Beach, Florida, has closed $15 million in Series D financing. The backer was Brace Pharma, the U.S. investment arm of Brazilian pharmaceutical firm EMS. In conjunction with the funding, Vinzenz Ploerer, president and CEO of Brace Pharma, has been added to the Tyrogenex board of directors.
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–June 19, 2014–Tyrogenex Inc., an Xcovery Group company focused on discovering and developing novel patented cancer and ophthalmic therapeutics, today announced it received $15 million in Series D financing from Brace Pharma, the U.S. investment company of EMS S/A, the largest pharmaceutical company in Brazil. Vinzenz Ploerer, president and CEO of Brace Pharma, was appointed to the Board of Directors for Tyrogenex, Inc.
Tyrogenex and its subsidiary, Xcovery Vision, are privately held companies focused on developing X-82, an orally administered, dual VEGFR/PDGFR inhibitor, as a targeted therapeutic for solid tumors and ophthalmological diseases, respectively. The funding from the Series D will support further clinical development of X-82, including a phase 2, randomized study of X-82 as an oral treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) that is expected to begin later this year.
“This significant investment from EMS and Brace Pharma will help to advance X-82, a compound with reduced toxicity compared to other VEGFR/PDGFR inhibitors, through the clinic to bring a much needed treatment to patients with solid tumors and wet AMD,” said Sheridan G. Snyder, chairman and chief executive officer of Tyrogenex and the Xcovery Group of companies. Snyder co-founded Tyrogenex with Dr. Chris Liang, executive vice president and chief scientific officer.
Tyrogenex’ commitment to innovation and development of life-saving therapeutics made it a fit for the Brace Pharma investment model. “Tyrogenex has shown that X-82 has the potential as a next-generation VEGFR/PDGFR inhibitor without the toxicities patients experience on currently approved therapeutics,” said Ploerer, the Brace Pharma CEO. Brace is based in Rockville, Md.
Preliminary data from Tyrogenex’ phase 1 trial evaluating X-82 in patients with advanced solid tumors previously presented at the annual meeting of the American Society for Clinical Oncology showed that X-82 was well tolerated, did not exhibit any dose-limiting toxicity and demonstrated preliminary signs of anti-tumor activity. Xcovery Vision has an ongoing phase 1/2 pilot study that is evaluating the safety and preliminary biologic activity/efficacy of X-82 in patients with wet AMD. The phase 1/2 study will be rolled into the phase 2 study for both wet AMD and solid tumors.
Tyrogenex is affiliated with Xcovery Holdings. It was founded by Sheridan (Sherry) Snyder through Biocatalyst International in partnership with Dr. Chris Liang. Through this partnership, Tyrogenex has developed a novel, patented cancer therapeutic, X-82. The compound, a dual VEGFR/PDGFR inhibitor, is being studies in a clinical trial for the treatment of advanced solid tumors. For more information, visit www.xcovery.com/tyrogenex-inc.
About Xcovery Vision
Xcovery Vision is an ophthalmology-focused subsidiary of Tyrogenex. Xcovery Vision’s goal is to develop innovative therapies to address unmet healthcare needs and improve the standard of care in the field of ophthalmology. Xcovery Vision is developing a comprehensive pipeline of ophthalmology therapies that target basic mechanisms of eye disease, including angiogenesis, fibrosis and inflammation. For additional information, visit www.xcovery.com/xcovery-vision.
About Xcovery Holdings
Xcovery is a holding company focused on the development of next-generation targeted therapeutics for cancer and ophthalmology funded by Biocatalyst International, a closely held early-stage venture fund. Xcovery Holdings has developed a broad portfolio of small molecule kinase inhibitors and has several active collaborations with leading academic and clinical centers to further validate the use of these candidates in a number of disease indications and in various combinations.
About Brace Pharma
Brace Pharma is the U.S. investment company of EMS, Brazil’s largest pharmaceutical company. Brace Pharma invests in companies developing innovative therapies for life threatening diseases with insufficient treatment options. Brace Pharma’s partnership model funds late stage clinical programs with the potential for commercialization within three to five years. For additional information, visit www.bracepharma.com.
EMS is the largest pharmaceutical company in Brazil, and the second largest pharmaceutical company in Latin America. With a 50-year corporate history, EMS focuses on over 2,500 prescription, generic, branded generic, and over-the-counter products for a wide variety of indications. EMS has full production capabilities, including manufacturing, packaging and quality control, as well as state-of-the-art research and development facilities. EMS is continually expanding its capacity through internally-funded investment in its core competencies. In 2013, EMS formed Brace Pharma to invest in pharmaceutical innovation in the United States and to expand global efforts for development and commercialization. For additional information, please visit www.ems.com.br.