ArGentis Pharmaceuticals LLC, a Memphis-based company that seeks to in-license therapies for chronic diseases, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Innova Memphis Inc.
Innova Memphis Inc, an early-stage investment fund, announced today it has invested in arGentis Pharmaceuticals LLC, a specialty pharmaceutical company based in
Innova was created by the Memphis Bioworks Foundation to fund
“Innova was chartered to find intellectual property, build a management team around the IP and then commercialize it,” said Ken Woody, president of Innova. “arGentis Pharmaceutical's intellectual properties made them a very good investment opportunity for Innova and for
arGentis has two therapies that will be used to treat Dry Eye Syndrome (DES): ARG101(T) treats menopausal women, and the other ARG102(P) treats men and younger women. What makes these therapies so unique is the method of delivery. The treatments are applied as a cream or gel to the outer upper and lower eyelids for transdermal delivery of the active pharmaceutical ingredient to the affected glands of the eye.
“Part of our attraction to arGentis was that the founders are local
Systemic sclerosis (SSc), is a life-threatening autoimmune disease. In the
As part of the investment, Innova will become a shareholder in arGentis Pharmaceuticals and Ken Woody will hold a position on the arGentis Board of Directors.
“We are excited about Innova's investment,” said Tom Davis, president and CEO, arGentis Pharmaceuticals. “The investment will be instrumental in arGentis continuing to execute its strategic plan and in creating value for our stakeholders by allocating additional resources to move our dry eye therapies into clinical trials later this year. We also will continue to develop the infrastructure to move ARG201 into a Phase III clinical program. We welcome Ken to our board and look forward to working with him to achieve these important milestones. We also believe this significant investment demonstrates Innova's commitment in further expanding the biomedical community in the
The final reason Innova expressed an interest in arGentis is that in addition to having great potential, it also supports the efforts of the local universities. arGentis' success will bring royalties to both the Southern College of Optometry (SCO) and the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, enabling both institutions to continue with their strong research focuses and develop more intellectual property that has commercial viability.
Innova is one of three strategies from the MemphisED program aimed specifically at developing a culture of innovation and entrepreneurialism in
“Innova resulted from the MemphisED program,” said Steven J. Bares, executive director of the Memphis Bioworks Foundation. “This investment is right on track to grow new jobs in the bioscience sector and help to create an entrepreneurial center of excellence in the
Innova invests in young, rapidly growing companies that have the potential to grow into significant economic contributors. The organization focuses on technology and defensible service companies based in