BRUSSELS, Belgium, March 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Unibioscreen S.A., the Brussels specialist oncology company, is pleased to announce that it has succeeded in the closing of a new financing round of EUR 5 million from existing shareholders (ING, Societe Generale Asset Management, E-capital, Brustart, UFG-Group and business angels) and from Hunza Ventures. This round brings the total amount raised since the Company's inception to date to EUR 27 million.
It strengthens the company's balance sheet and allows the progression of Unibioscreen's two lead compounds, UNBS1450 and UNBS5162, into clinical trials in cancer patients by mid 2008. These two compounds present novel mode of action and will be developed respectively in Europe and in the US.
In Europe the principal investigators are Dr Patrick Schoffski (UZ Gasthuisberg) and Dr Hans Gelderblom (Leiden Hospital) and in the US a draft IND prepared by Dr Daniel Von Hoff (principal investigator for UNBS5162) has been accepted by the FDA.
Entry in phase II clinical trials is planned for late 2009.
This financing round is part of an ongoing larger round to be completed by this summer.
The company has also reorganized its management structure to prepare its entry into clinical development phases.
Christiane Verhaegen will temporarily combine the mission of Chief Executive Officer with her former role as the Company's Chief Financial Officer. She commented: "I am very pleased that we have secured this additional funding from both our existing shareholders and from new investors. These new funds will allow us to advance the development of our lead compounds into clinical phases and to reinforce our financial position. The fundraising reconfirms our shareholders confidence in our anti-cancer therapeutics approach. Our investors bring more than just cash and I am pleased they are joining this promising endeavour."
Dr Robert Kiss, former Chief Executive Officer and Chief Scientific Officer, will remain Chief Scientific Officer focusing on leading the company's research activities.
The company has also strengthened its commercial and corporate capabilities with the appointment of Dimitri F Dimitriou as commercial advisor, focusing on licensing and business development. Mr Dimitriou is the Chief Executive of ImmuPharma plc and the founder of DyoDelta Biosciences, a company specializing in deals in the pharma/biotech sector. He was previously Senior Director of Worldwide Business Development at GlaxoSmithKline and Bristol-Myers Squibb.
The company is in the process of hiring an expert in clinical development in oncology.
Notes to the Editors
Unibioscreen is a specialist oncology drug discovery and development company, working on novel, first-in-class compounds, with two blockbuster-potential drugs entering clinical development phases mid-2008.
Unibioscreen's core business is the identification and development of New Chemical Entities for the targeted treatment of cancer and its metastases, with focus on cytotoxic/cytostatic chemotherapeutics that kill apoptosis- resistant and multidrug resistant cancer cells and anti-migratory drug candidates that fight metastases.
Unibioscreen was first founded in 1999, is located in Brussels and has currently 28 FTEs.
More information is available on http://www.unibioscreen.com.
About Hunza Ventures
Hunza Ventures is the venture capital arm of a privately held group which focuses on life sciences and high-tech industries by investing in companies with great potential for value creation and by contributing its business experience, knowledge and network to make them best-in-class.
CONTACT: For further information please contact: Christiane Verhaegen,
interim CEO & CFO, +32-476-98-10-78, firstname.lastname@example.org;
Dimitri Dimitriou, Chief Business Officer, +44-794-929-3222,