What You Need to Know About Petra Pharma
Published: Jan 16, 2017
January 9, 2017
By Mark Terry, BioSpace.com Breaking News Staff
Petra Pharma focuses on novel enzyme targets that play a central role in a variety of important cellular processes.
The company’s co-founders are Lewis Cantley, director of the Cancer Center at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York-Presbyterian Hospital, and Nathanael Gray, a professor of biological chemistry and molecular pharmacology at Harvard Medical School and Dana-Farber Cancer Center.
The company was founded in 2016. Its office and laboratory will be located within Seattle’s Accelerator facilities at the Alexandria Center for Life Science, New York City’s first and only premier life science park.
The company’s initial management comes out of Accelerator’s core management team.
Thong Le—chief executive officer. Le is also the chief executive officer of Accelerator Corporation. Before joining Accelerator, Le was managing director at WRF Capital, the venture capital investment arm of Washington Research Foundation in Seattle, Washington.
David McElligott—chief scientific officer. McElligott joined Accelerator in 2012 as its chief scientific Officer. Before that he was the founding chief scientific officer at Groove Biopharma.
Petra’s board of directors includes:
Barbara Dalton—Pfizer Ventures
Johnston Erwin—Eli Lilly and Company
Steve Gillis—ARCH Venture Partners
Thong Le—Accelerator. Joel Marcus—Alexandria Real Estate Equities
Misti Ushio—Harris & Harris Group
Asish Xavier—Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation.
The company launched on January 6, 2016, with a $48 million Series A investment round. The investors included Accelerator New York’s investment syndicate partners, AbbVie, Alexandria Venture Investments, ARCH Venture Partners, Eli Lilly and Company, Harris & Harris Group, Innovate NY Fund, Johnson & Johnson Innovation, The Partnership Fund for New York City, Pfizer Venture Investments, Watson Fund and WuXi PharmaTech.
McElligott told BioSpace, “Petra Pharma’s proposed lead program incorporates a compelling preclinical data package for a novel target in both oncology and metabolic disease indications.”
“We believe that the company holds a unique and proprietary advantage and we will not elaborate more at this time,” Le told BioSpace.
What to Look For
Given how young Petra is a company, its focus is on building and growing the company and its initial lead product.
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