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Satori Pharmaceuticals Raises $22M; Names Former Senior Pfizer Executive as CEO



1/8/2009 6:34:10 AM

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Jan. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Satori Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, a privately held developer of therapeutics for Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and other neurodegenerative disorders, today announced $22 million in institutional financing. InterWest Partners, Prospect Venture Partners, and New Enterprise Associates, Inc. (NEA) co-led the round. The company's founders, PureTech Ventures, and other existing investors also participated. The company had previously raised $3M in seed financing. Satori also announced that Dr. Jeffrey Ives, former Senior Vice President at Pfizer, has signed on as the company's CEO, and joins Dr. Mark Findeis, co-founder and Head of Research, on the leadership team for Satori.

Alzheimer's disease is a debilitating disorder characterized by the progressive loss of memory, thought and language. More than 5.2 M people in the US alone suffer from Alzheimer's disease and it is estimated that this form of dementia strikes more than 1 in 8 adults in the US over the age of 65 years. By 2050, it is estimated that the number of new cases each year will double in the US to greater than 959,000. Available therapies provide only temporary symptomatic relief. Satori is focused on the development of disease modifying therapies that block disease progression by targeting the key neurotoxic mediators of Alzheimer's disease.

"Satori has one of the most exciting approaches we've seen in this field and we're delighted to be working with Jeff Ives, Mark Findeis, and the outstanding team of experts involved," said Mr. Chris Ehrlich, General Partner of InterWest Partners.

During his tenure at Pfizer, the world's largest research-based pharmaceutical company, Dr. Ives led CNS and oncology teams that discovered greater than 50 clinical candidates including multiple new products such as Geodon®, Chantix® and Tarceva®, and was a co-leader of in-licensing teams for Pfizer products including Celebrex®, Bextra®, and Aricept®. He most recently served as SVP, Research Portfolio Leader, and SVP of Pharmacokinetics, Dynamics & Metabolism.

"My role at Pfizer gave me a broad perspective on drug discovery and development and the dearth of treatment options for these major unmet medical needs. I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to lead Satori where we can have a focused impact on developing therapies that block the neurotoxic pathways that lead to Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative disorders," said Dr. Ives.

Dr. Ives, Mr. Ehrlich, Mr. Ed Mathers, Partner at NEA, and Dr. Ilan Zipkin, Partner at Prospect Venture Partners, were named to Satori's Board of Directors, joining Dr. Thomas Salzmann, former EVP of Preclinical Development at Merck, and Board member at Sirtris and Concert Pharmaceuticals; Dr. Bennett Shapiro, PureTech Senior Partner and former EVP of Basic and External Research at Merck; and Ms. Daphne Zohar, PureTech Managing Partner, and Satori's founding CEO prior to Jeff Ives' appointment.

Satori was founded in 2005 by PureTech Ventures, Dr. Mark Findeis, and a group of renowned Alzheimer's and neurodegenerative disease experts including Dr. Dennis Selkoe, the Vincent and Stella Coates Professor of Neurologic Diseases at Harvard Medical School, Co-Director, Center for Neurologic Diseases at Brigham and Women's Hospital, and an Alzheimer's pioneer. Dr. Selkoe noted, "Advising Satori about developing novel types of disease-modifying therapies represents an exciting collaboration, and I believe that Satori is very well-positioned to contribute to helping patients who currently lack effective treatment options."

About NEA:

New Enterprise Associates, Inc. (NEA) is a leading venture capital firm focused on helping entrepreneurs create and build major new enterprises that use technology to improve the way we live, work and play. Since its founding in 1978, the firm has followed the same core principles: supporting its entrepreneurs, providing an excellent return to its limited partners, and practicing its profession with the highest standards and respect. Through its affiliated funds, NEA focuses on investments at all stages of a company's development, from seed stage through IPO. With approximately $8.5 billion in committed capital across its affiliated funds, NEA's experienced management team has invested in over 650 companies, of which more than 160 have gone public and more than 240 have been acquired. NEA has U.S. offices in Chevy Chase, Maryland; Menlo Park, California; and Baltimore, Maryland. In addition, New Enterprise Associates (India) Pvt. Ltd. has an office in Bangalore, India and New Enterprise Associates (Beijing) Ltd. has offices in Beijing and Shanghai, China. For additional information, visit http://www.nea.com.

About InterWest Partners:

InterWest Partners (www.interwest.com), founded in 1979, is a leading diversified venture capital firm focused on building long-term relationships with entrepreneurs and portfolio companies. Currently investing its tenth fund, IW X, a $650 million fund, InterWest has raised more than $2.8 billion of capital since inception. InterWest has 14 investing partners in Menlo Park, CA and Dallas, TX, who bring together deep domain knowledge in life sciences and information technology.

The firm's investments in information technology include: CIENA (CIEN), Copper Mountain Networks (CMTN), Crystal Semiconductor (acquired by Cirrus Logic, CRUS), Cyrix (CYRX; acquired by National Semiconductor (NSM), Lightera (acquired by CIENA), PlaceWare (acquired by Microsoft, MSFT), SiTera (acquired by Vitesse, VTSS), Silicon Graphics (SGI), Stratacom (STRM; acquired by Cisco, CSCO) and Xilinx (XLNX).

The firm's investments in life sciences include: ArthroCare (ARTC), Aspreva Pharmaceuticals Corporation (ASPV, acquired by Galenica group, SWX:GALN), Cor Therapeutics (CORR; acquired by Millennium Pharmaceuticals, MLNM), Corixa (CRXA; acquired by GlaxoSmithKline, GSK), Coulter Pharmaceutical (CLTR; acquired by Corixa Pharmaceuticals, CRXA), Cubist Pharmaceuticals (CBST), Epicor Medical (acquired by St. Jude Medical, STJ), Inspire Pharmaceuticals (ISPH), IntraLase (ILSE), Myogen (MYOG), Spinal Dynamics (acquired by Medtronic, MDT), TheraSense (THER; acquired by Abbott Labs, ABT) and Ventritex (VNTX; acquired by St. Jude Medical, STJ).

About Prospect Venture Partners:

Prospect Venture Partners is a venture capital firm based in Palo Alto, California, with $1 billion of capital under management. The firm is dedicated to investing in outstanding biomedical technology and life science companies. Prospect targets commercially attractive health care enterprises with outstanding entrepreneurial management teams, proprietary products, and innovative technology or services with potential for significant investment returns.

The firm invests in companies with a broad range of development and financing requirements including: (a) incubating new companies, (b) investing in first and second venture financing rounds, and (c) participating in later stage private and public companies with proven business models requiring expansion capital. For more information, visit www.prospectventures.com.

About PureTech Ventures:

PureTech Ventures (www.puretechventures.com) is a Boston-based venture creation firm specializing in translating breakthrough research from top tier academic institutions into therapies that will impact human health. PureTech's Partners include entrepreneurs and leaders from the top echelon of pharma, biotech and academia.

About Satori(TM) Pharmaceuticals

Satori Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (www.Satoripharma.com) was founded in 2005 by Dr. Mark Findeis, PureTech Ventures and a group of world renowned neurodegenerative disease experts and experienced drug discoverers, including Dennis Selkoe, M.D., the Vincent and Stella Coates Professor of Neurologic Diseases at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, an affiliate of Harvard Medical School; Donald Price, M.D., Professor of Pathology, Neurology, and Neuroscience and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Pathology and Director of the Division of Neuropathology at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Christopher Eckman, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Molecular Neuroscience, The Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL; Jon Clardy, Ph.D., Professor of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology at Harvard Medical School; Jonathan King, Ph.D., Professor of Biology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Marlene Cohen, Ph.D., former Research Fellow at Eli Lilly & Company; and Tom Salzmann, Ph.D., former Executive Vice President, Merck Research Labs and board member of Sirtris Pharmaceuticals and Concert Pharmaceuticals.

Satori is committed to the development of disease modifying therapies for Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases through the targeting of the key neurotoxic mediators and pathways of neurodegenerative diseases.

This release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Such forward-looking statements reflect, among other things, management's current expectations, plans and strategies, and anticipated financial results, all of which are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and factors that may cause our actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Many of these risks are beyond our ability to control or predict including the company's need for additional funds, the company's dependence on a limited number of compounds, the early state of the products the company is developing, uncertainties relating to clinical trials and regulatory reviews, competition and dependence on collaborative partners, the company's ability to avoid infringement of the patent rights of others, and the company's ability to obtain adequate patent protection and to enforce these rights. Because of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Furthermore, forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Satori Pharmaceuticals does not undertake any obligation to update or review any such forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Source: Satori Pharmaceuticals Incorporated


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