Antibiotics Developer Octagon Therapeutics Closes Financing, Adds Thought Leaders
Published: Feb 14, 2018
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Feb. 13, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Octagon Therapeutics, a preclinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing antibiotics for multi-drug resistant infections, today announced the formation of a Scientific Advisory Board and the successful completion of a Seed Financing. Octagon's drug discovery platform, based upon work done in Fred Ausubel's lab at MGH, focuses on the identification of novel metabolic pathways that power pathogenic bacteria. Using this platform, Octagon has identified promising small molecule inhibitors of these critical targets in resistant bacteria. In addition to Dr. Ausubel, Octagon's Scientific Advisory Board now includes Dr. Jim Collins (MIT), Dr. Eric Brown (McMaster University), and Dr. Eletherios Mylonakis (Brown University).
Bacterial infections have become a public health crisis, as resistance to current antibiotics has been spreading at a worrisome rate. A number of global health organizations have sounded the alarm, highlighting the need for new medicines as the last novel class of antibiotics was developed more than 30 years ago. This year resistant infections will claim more than 700,000 lives globally and, if current trends continue, will rival cancer as a leading cause of death.
"Our efforts are focused on novel approaches to antibiotic discovery, which will enable Octagon to develop new medicines to combat antibiotic-resistant infections. Targeting bacterial metabolism presents a new therapeutic strategy and Octagon's SAB now includes world leaders in this field," said Fred Ausubel, Octagon's scientific co-founder.
Octagon's lead program is based on the optimization of an older medicine, which has previously been shown to be safe in man as well as effective for an unrelated indication. Identified with Octagon's discovery platform, this compound has shown a high level of activity against resistant Gram-negative pathogens in animal infection models, including Acinetobacter baumanii and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, regarded as among the hardest to treat bacterial pathogens.
Octagon was incorporated in 2016 after obtaining exclusive access to foundational intellectual property developed at MGH. The company is focused on treating infections caused by the most dangerous "ESKAPE-group" bacterial pathogens. Octagon has established R&D operations at the Pagliuca Life Lab, and has now closed a financing for an undisclosed amount from a group of angel investors and family offices. "This Seed financing will allow Octagon to expand the scientific team and to accelerate preclinical development activities" said President and Chief Operating Officer, Isaac Stoner. "We are fully committed to the discovery and development of first-in-class antibiotics."
Contact: Isaac Stoner, email@example.com
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SOURCE Octagon Therapeutics Inc