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Bayer HealthCare AG (BAY) Spin-Out, Actimis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Completes $6 Million Series A Financing


10/19/2005 5:10:50 PM

SAN DIEGO, April 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Actimis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a startup company dedicated to developing and commercializing small molecule therapeutics for respiratory and inflammatory diseases, today announced a $6 million private placement of its Series A stock. The financing was led by Sanderling Ventures of San Mateo, California. Additional investors include Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners of New York.

Bayer HealthCare AG has assigned the rights to five preclinical research programs to Actimis, including two advanced programs with highly optimized lead candidates and three additional research-stage programs. The majority of the targets represent first-in-class molecules and have broad application across respiratory diseases including asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) as well as inflammatory disorders including atopic dermatitis, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis and others. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

"Our validated targets and proprietary programs are well positioned to produce novel therapeutics that address critical unmet medical needs," said Kevin B. Bacon, Ph.D., founder and chief scientific officer of Actimis. "We are now setting up state-of-the-art laboratory facilities and looking to establish Actimis as a leading force in drug development for respiratory and inflammatory diseases, and we hope to file an investigational new drug application (IND) with the FDA in the near future."

"Actimis' research programs have been developed to an advanced stage using very high standards for both biological validation and medicinal chemistry. The company's work in chemokines and chemoattractants, which are an emerging new area of discovery and are the focus of the most advanced programs in Actimis' portfolio, has a high potential for therapeutic intervention," said Peter C. M. McWilliams, Ph.D., principal with Sanderling Ventures and chairman of Actimis. "We look forward to working with Actimis to rapidly advance these exciting programs to the clinic."

About Actimis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Actimis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a privately held biopharmaceutical company focused exclusively on the development and commercialization of small molecule therapeutics for severe respiratory, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), inflammatory dermatoses, inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis. Actimis was spun off from Bayer HealthCare AG in November 2004. Investors include Sanderling Ventures and Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners.

About Sanderling Ventures

Founded in 1979, Sanderling is among the oldest investment firms dedicated to biomedical investing. Sanderling's unique approach combines a specialized investment focus with active management and long-term commitment. Since its inception, Sanderling has supported over 40 biomedical companies from very early stages through commercial development.

About Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners

Mitsui & Co. Venture Partners (MCVP) is a New York based venture capital firm that invests primarily in life science and technology companies in North America. Since 1997, MCVP has created two funds totaling approximately $250 million in capital and has invested in over 40 companies. Having offices in New York, Tokyo and Palo Alto, the firm actively seeks technology and business seeds in Japan and offers North American start-up companies value-added opportunities in Japan and Asia.

About Bayer HealthCare AG

Bayer HealthCare AG, a subgroup of Bayer AG with sales of approximately 8.9 billion Euro in 2003, is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the health care and medical products industry. The company combines the global activities of the division's Animal Health, Biological Products, Consumer Care, Diagnostics and Pharmaceuticals. 34,600 people are employed by Bayer HealthCare worldwide. The company's products enhance well-being and quality of life by diagnosing, preventing and treating disease.

Actimis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

CONTACT: Carolyn Hawley, 1-858-527-3484, chawley@irpr.com, for ActimisPharmaceuticals, Inc.



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