OrbiMed leads $22m round for Aerpio Therapeutics


biotech_lrgBiopharmaceutical startup Aerpio Therapeutics has secured $22m in a round led by venture capital firm OrbiMed.

Novartis Venture Funds, Satter Investment Management, Kearny Venture Partners, Venture Investors, Triathlon Medical Ventures and Athenian Venture Partners also participated in the round.

The funds will support expanded development of AKB-9778, a small molecule activator of Tie2, which is currently in a Phase 2 trial for the treatment of diabetic macular edema.

The company will also use the proceeds to advance another candidate, AKB-4924, a small-molecule HIF1 activator, into clinical development for inflammatory bowel disease.

Private equity partner at OrbiMed Chau Khuong said, “Aerpio’s unique approach to activating Tie2 with AKB-9778 has demonstrated safety and efficacy in early clinical trials and holds great promise for treatment of DME and other retinal diseases, as well as unmet needs outside of ophthalmology.

“OrbiMed is pleased to support the expanded development of AKB-9778, as well as the Company’s promising HIF1 activator program.”

Last month OrbiMed backed a $38m Series C round for biopharmaceutical company Sage Therapeutics.

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