Hannover Medical School Spin-off Cardior Raises EUR 15 Million
Published: May 12, 2017
Unique RNA-based approach for the treatment of heart diseases
11 May 2017, Munich – Cardior Pharmaceuticals has completed a EUR 15 million Series A financing round led by LSP (Life Sciences Partners), Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund (BIVF), Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS), BioMedPartners (with its new BioMedInvest III Fund) and High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF). The company builds on the pioneering work of Prof. Thomas Thum from Hannover Medical School (MHH) demonstrating the potential of regulatory RNAs as molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of heart diseases.
Ascenion, the MHH’s technology transfer partner, has worked closely with Prof. Thum over recent years, supporting the translational development of his results and the foundation of the new company. The technology transfer specialist has also negotiated the terms for exclusive access to MHH intellectual property on behalf of the institution.
Complementary IP was licensed from other public research organizations, including the Max Planck Society supported by Max Planck Innovation.
‘Patients and physicians have been waiting for a major breakthrough in the field of cardiovascular diseases for over 10 years,’ says Dr Christian Stein, CEO of Ascenion. ‘With its unique technology, experienced team and strong line-up of investors, the company is now perfectly positioned to make that happen. To our knowledge there is currently no other approach under development with comparable capacity to diagnose, prevent or cure cardiac failure. It could change the lives of millions of patients.’
‘The significant funding raised at this stage of development will provide the resources for an ambitious development plan for our lead compound,’ Prof. Thomas Thum added, who will take the role of Cardior’s Chief Scientific Officer. In conjunction with the financing, Cardior appointed Dr Claudia Ulbrich as Chief Executive Officer. She brings with her two decades of operational management and corporate development experience in pharma and biotech, including publicly traded companies.
Cardior’s approach has already attracted several awards, including the prestigious Outstanding Investigator Award from the International Society of Heart Research (ISHR). Moreover, the company won the Startup Challenge at the Deutsche Biotechnologietage 2017.
Ascenion is an independent technology transfer company focussing on the life sciences. It is partner to over 20 research organizations, universities and university hospitals in Germany and Europe, including life-science institutes of the Helmholtz and Leibniz Associations, the Hannover Medical School and the Charité. Ascenion’s multidisciplinary, industry-experienced team works closely with its partners to tap the potential of their research by identifying promising results, obtaining patent protection, and turning pure science into applied technology. Particular strengths are spin-off support and project development, where early-stage projects are transformed into assets that attract potential investors and licensees. This has led to the founding of numerous new companies and the transfer of innovative medical approaches into approved drugs, changing the lives of thousands of patients. Profits from Ascenion’s operative business and exit proceeds flow via its parent company, the LifeScience Foundation for the Promotion of Science and Research, to fund further translational research at its partner institutes.
Ascenion has also initiated the pan European showcasing event BioVaria to stimulate deal making and early collaboration between Europe’s academia and the global life-sciences industry.
Further information at: www.ascenion.de
About Cardior Pharmaceuticals
Cardior Pharmaceuticals is a privately held German biotech company pioneering the next generation of non-coding RNA-based therapeutics in heart failure. Prof. Thomas Thum and his team have built globally renowned expertise in the non-coding RNA field and demonstrated their ability to develop & partner innovative drug candidates. The Medical School Hannover (MHH) and the Institute of Molecular and Translational Therapeutic Strategies (IMTTS) offer a favorable bench-to-bedside environment to support Cardior as one of the world’s leading centers in RNA biology. The intellectual property was licensed from Hannover Medical School (MHH), the Max Planck Society (MPG) and from several world-renowned French Institutes.
Cardior is the winner of the Startup Challenge at the Deutsche Biotechnologietage 2017, the largest German biotech summit. Founded in 2016 by Prof. Thum, Cardior was initially supported by VentureVilla Inkubator GmbH and hannoverimpuls GmbH.
For more information, please visit www.cardior.de
Dr Christian Stein, CEO Ascenion GmbH
+49 89 3188140
Dr Claudia Ulbrich, CEO Cardior Pharmaceuticals
+49 511 37484051
Prof. Dr Dr Thomas Thum, CSO Cardior Pharmaceuticals
+49 511 532 5272