BrainVectis, a France-based biotechnology company specialized in the development of gene therapy for neurodegenerative diseases, has announced that it has raised €1 million ($1.1m) from private investors in a Series A financing.
A spin-off of INSERM, the company will use the funds to complete preclinical pharmacological tests to initiate its gene therapy clinical trials; in 2019 for Huntington’s disease and in 2021 for Alzheimer’s disease. The fundraising campaign was supported by Cassagne et Associés and Guillaume Rémy (Velvet Avocats).
BrainVectis’s initial two clinical programs are aimed to stopping the progression of Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s disease by restoring cholesterol metabolism in the brain. Reduction in the expression of CYP46A1, a key enzyme in cholesterol metabolism, is a hallmark of these neurodegenerative diseases. BrainVectis plans to use gene therapy to restore the expression of this protein in the brain of patients.
The company has an exclusive license to use the INSERM patents behind the innovative therapy. The company was created with the support of the Technology Transfer Acceleration Company (SATT) IDF Innov through the financing of complementary proof of concept studies and the Paris Biotech Santé incubator and has collaboration with the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA).
Dr Nathalie Cartier-Lacave, founder of BrainVectis commented: “We are extremely grateful for the support of Paris Biotech Santé and the SATT IDF Innov who have helped us to create the company and given us an exclusive license for the patents required to develop the project.” Dr Cartier-Lacave is the director of research at INSERM and is the president of the European Society of Gene and Cell Therapy (ESGCT).
Source: Gene therapy startup bags cash to fund preclinical work in Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s; Press Release