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Startup, Alexar Therapeutics, Launches With $21.5 Million In The Bank



1/2/2014 6:52:59 AM

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NeXeption, LLC Forms New Company Alexar Therapeutics, Inc. to Develop Novel LXR Agonist Portfolio for Dermatologic Indications; Raises $21.5 Million in Series A Financing

MALVERN, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--NeXeption, LLC, a biopharmaceutical management company that brings together product opportunities, management expertise and funding to reach compelling partnership milestones, announced today that it has secured $21.5 million in Series A financing to form Alexar Therapeutics, Inc. Alexar is focused on developing an innovative portfolio of Liver X receptor (LXR) agonists for both systemic and local use. LXR agonists are members of the nuclear receptor superfamily that regulate multiple genetic pathways and exhibit potent anti-inflammatory activity. The Series A financing, led by New Science Ventures and Third Point Ventures with participation from Palo Alto Investors, will fund the initial development of Alexar’s lead compound, A-110, a topical LXR agonist for the treatment of inflammatory cutaneous disorders.

Dave Pfeiffer has been named Alexar Chief Executive Officer and Board Director. Mr. Pfeiffer is a successful biopharmaceutical executive with more than 25 years experience as a senior executive at both large and small life science companies. Most recently, he served as a Board Member and Chief Commercial Officer of Ellman International, a private equity-backed surgical device and aesthetics company focused on the dermatology market. He began his career at SmithKline Beecham.

Entrepreneur Steve Tullman, Managing Partner of NeXeption, will serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Alexar. Mr. Tullman most recently served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ceptaris Therapeutics, Inc. (acquired by Actelion) and Executive Chairman of Vicept (acquired by Allergan). Previously, he co-founded and led several companies including Ception Therapeutics, a biologics company (acquired by Cephalon).

“The NeXeption business model allows us to develop promising drug candidates like A-110 by creating and funding independent operating companies that are focused solely on maximizing the value of each asset,” said Mr. Tullman. “NeXeption’s highly concentrated experience is essential to optimizing product profiles, executing development plans and efficiently moving these assets from concept to launch. Dave is highly qualified to lead the Alexar team and help us realize the potential of this novel LXR agonist portfolio, both clinically and commercially.”

Dr. Neal Walker, an experienced entrepreneur, board certified dermatologist and NeXeption partner, will serve as Vice Chairman of Alexar. Dr. Walker is the Chief Executive Officer, President and Director of Aclaris Therapeutics Inc., a NeXeption company developing a novel dermatology treatment. Most recently, Dr. Walker served as Founder, CEO and Director of Vicept Therapeutics, (acquired by Allergan). Dr. Walker also co-founded Octagon Research Solutions, Inc. (acquired by Accenture).

“There is a growing need among patients and physicians for innovative therapeutics that treat inflammatory skin disorders,” added Dr. Walker. “This portfolio of products has a well-established mechanism of action applicable to a number of indications in dermatology as well as demonstrated potential in other therapeutic areas.”

The Alexar Board also includes Somu Subramaniam of New Science Ventures and Jason Hong, Ph.D. of Third Point Ventures.

About New Science Ventures

New Science Ventures, LLC (NSV) is a New York-based venture capital firm that invests in companies using novel scientific approaches in the Life Sciences sector (biotech, pharma and medical devices) and the Information Technology sector (semiconductors, photonics and advanced materials). NSV was founded in 2004 by Somu Subramaniam, Managing Partner, and Tom Lavin, Partner, and has invested approximately $300 million in both early and late stage companies located in the US, Europe, India and China. For more information, visit www.newscienceventures.com.

About Third Point Ventures

Third Point LLC is an SEC-registered investment adviser based in New York City. The firm was founded in 1995 by Daniel S. Loeb, who serves as CEO and oversees all investment activity. Daniel Loeb has more than 27 years of experience in the financial markets, with particular emphasis on special situation equities, distressed debt and risk arbitrage. Third Point employs an event-driven, value-oriented investment style. The Firm seeks to identify situations where we anticipate a catalyst will unlock value. Third Point LLC’s team includes professionals focused on investment activity, risk management, and trading. This team is supported by highly-experienced accounting, operations, investor relations and marketing, and legal and compliance professionals. For more information, visit www.thirdpoint.com.

About Palo Alto Investors

Palo Alto Investors, LLC (located in Palo Alto, California) is a registered investment advisor providing investment advisory services to a variety of investors including individuals, trusts, foundations and institutions. The firm currently manages over $1.2 billion in assets with an emphasis on Micro Cap and Small Cap market segments targeting the healthcare sector. For more information, visit www.pa-investors.com.

About Alexar Therapeutics

Alexar Therapeutics, Inc. is focused on developing an innovative portfolio of Liver X receptor (LXR) agonists. For more information, visit www.alexartx.com.

About NeXeption, LLC

NeXeption, LLC is a biopharmaceutical management company that brings together product opportunities, management expertise and the necessary funding to reach compelling partnership milestones. The NeXeption management team has a proven track record in raising capital, operating development stage companies and forming strategic partnerships to advance products for the benefit of patients. More information is available at www.nexeption.com.

Contacts

Sam Brown, Inc.

Mike Beyer, 773-463-4211

mikebeyer@sambrown.com

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