Paris, October 1, 2012 - Biophytis, a research company in health and nutrition focusing on metabolic disorders and age-related diseases, announces today that it has raised EUR two million (USD 2.6M) in a B round. Metabrain Research, a spin-off of Merck Serono based in Chilly-Mazarin (south of Paris) joined existing investors Seventure partners and CM-CIC Capital Prive in this round.
This funding will enable Biophytis to continue the development of its pipeline of nutraceuticals and drug candidates through two collaborative projects with Metabrain Research. The first project, SARCOB, targets the treatment of sarcopenic obesity, in partnership with the Myology Institute and Institute of Cardio-metabolism and Nutrition, both at the University of Pierre and Marie Curie (UPMC), and France’s national agricultural research institute, INRA. The second, MACULIA, focuses on treating age-related macular degeneration, in collaboration with UPMC’s Institut de la Vision and Iris Pharma, a contract research organization dedicated to ophthalmology. Biophytis leads these two projects, which are sponsored by the Medicen competitivity cluster in the Paris region and which benefit from grants of EUR 2.3 million from a number of European and French local and national government bodies.
“The arrival of Metabrain Research as a shareholder marks a step change in a partnership that we have pursued for several years in the SARCOB project,” said Stanislas Veillet, CEO and founder of Biophytis. “It will reinforce our capacity to develop drug candidates derived from our portfolio of nutraceutical active substances, with the aim of signing co-development contracts with pharmaceutical companies.”
“The worldwide market of nutrition, where food and drugs meet, has already reached EUR 120 billion annual revenues and is growing at ten per cent a year,” said Isabelle de Cremoux, general manager at Seventure partners. “This makes it very attractive to many industry players. Biophytis is a pioneer in this field and this financing will allow it to accelerate its development with a strategy targeting both drugs and nutrition.”
“We believe the strategic partnership between our two companies in both the scientific and marketing fields will allow us to develop a portfolio of innovative projects,” said Valerie Autier, CEO of Metabrain Research. “We will be able to offer full coverage of metabolic diseases through a joint nutraceutical and pharmaceutical approach.”
The French and European organizations that are providing grants to the SARCOB and MACULIA projects are FUI (Fonds Unique Interministeriel, a cross-ministry funding body), the European Regional Development Fund, the Essonne and Seine-Saint-Denis departments, the Ile de France region and the city of Paris.
Biophytis is developing a portfolio of nutraceuticals and drug candidates derived from active natural substances targeted at metabolic disorders and age-related diseases. This strategy allows the identification of drug candidates from clinically tested actives, hence reducing the clinical risk and the development of nutraceuticals compliant with the new European ruling on health product claims. Its portfolio includes two clinically tested proprietary actives. These are Quinolia(R) for obesity treatment and Bixilia(R) for skin protection against UV radiation. It also includes two drug candidates at the pre-clinical stage in the fields of sarcopenic obesity and age-related macular degeneration. Biophytis co-owns a portfolio of five patents with Universite Pierre et Marie Curie. Its aim is to sign research and licensing agreements with companies in the pharmaceutical and nutrition industries.
Based in Romainville (Seine-Saint-Denis), near Paris, in the Biocitech life sciences park, Biophytis was created in 2006 by Stanislas Veillet and Rene Lafont, professor at Universite Pierre et Marie Curie.
About Seventure partners:
Pioneer in the financing of industrial biotechnologies and innovations in nutrition and partner of high growth potential companies, Seventure has invested in the most innovative industries since 1997. With over EUR 500 million managed, Seventure is a leader in European venture capital and invests in information and communication technology in France and Germany and in life sciences throughout Europe. Seventure is a subsidiary of Natixis.
In Life Sciences, our four favorite areas of investment are biotech and pharma products, medical devices, industrial biotechnology and cleantech, as well as nutrition / personalized medicine / skincare / human services …
About CM-CIC Capital Prive:
CM-CIC Capital Prive, a subsidiary of CM-CIC Capital Finance, operates in venture capital, investing in SMEs and high growth potential innovative companies with proven positioning. It supports the management with its proven know-how through the mid-term stages of company development.
CM-CIC Capital Prive manages EUR 400 million with its FIP (Fonds d’Investissement de Proximite) and FCPI (Fonds Commun de Placement dans l’Innovation).
About Metabrain Research:
Based in Chilly Mazarin (Essonne) just to the south of Paris, Metabrain is a partnering research organization (PRO) focusing its research on prevention solutions (nutrition) and treatment solutions (drugs) in the field of age-related diseases. A spin-off of Merck Serono, Metabrain offers life sciences companies turnkey collaborative projects from concept to drug candidate, in the fields of brain diseases (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s) and metabolic disorders (diabetes, obesity). Metabrain has a portfolio of five development projects and an integrated innovation platform (chemistry, biology, pharmacology, pharmacocinetics) up to industry standards. Metabrain employs 30 staff and has revenues of EUR three million.
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