Principia Biopharma hires Dr Funk following $12.5m venture funding

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A group of venture firms have re-upped their investments in immunology specialist Principia Biopharma through a $12.5m financing round.

New Leaf Venture Partners, Orbimed Advisors and Morgenthaler Ventures all took part in the round alongside SROne and Mission Bay Capital.

Principia announced it had expanded its senior management team following the investment by hiring Dr Jens Oliver Funk, pictured, as chief scientific officer.

Dr Funk has almost 20 years of experience in biomedical research at companies including Merck, where he was senior vice president of R&D.

Principia had previously completed a tiered Series A round totalling $36.3m in February last year, receiving the first $12m tranche that month.

It said proceeds from the latest financing would be used to push its work towards the clinical stage and develop additional programmes.

Principia CEO Martin Babler said, “We are pleased to complete the closing of our second tranche as it provides the necessary funding for Principia to advance our lead compound toward our first clinical trials in 2013.

“We appreciate the continued support from our current investors as we invest in important treatments for cancer and autoimmune disorders.”

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