GENEVA, Switzerland--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Global Emerging Markets (“GEM”) announces today completion of an initial tranche of funding into and Relief Therapeutics SA (“Relief”) as part of a planned total €2.5 million Series A round, aimed at planning clinical development activities for its lead drug candidate atexakin alfa.
Atexakin alfa is an experimental drug ready to enter clinical testing in patients addressing an unmet medical need in diabetic neuropathy (“DN”). Currently, no similar drugs are approved, while the market for DN-related drugs is expected to increase to USD 4.1 billion by 2019. Existing treatments only address symptoms of DN, Relief’s atexakin alfa, instead, addresses physical regeneration, which could lead to quality-of-life improvement in 40-60% of the >300 million diabetics suffering DN worldwide.
Relief’s executive team: Gaël Hédou (CEO), Michel Dreano (COO), and Yves Sagot (CSO) also the Relief co-founders possesses significant track records in drug discovery and development. Peter de Svastich from GEM will complete the Board of Directors of the company.
Gaël Hédou added: "This initial tranche of funding from GEM is key for Relief to begin preparations for the planned Phase 2 randomized, placebo-controlled, multi-center study to assess the efficacy and safety of atexakin alfa in DN."
Chris Brown: Founder and Director of GEM said: “GEM is pleased to announce the commitment of its initial funding for Relief, a portion of a total firm commitment of €2.5 million to facilitate Relief’s next-generation approach to the treatment of peripheral neuropathies, thus transformatively creating a new biotechnology company dedicated to therapeutic innovation in areas of unmet medical needs.”
GEM (www.gemny.com) founded in 1991 is a USD 3.4 billion investment group having completed 370 transactions in 70 countries. GEM is an alternative investment group that manages diverse investment vehicles worldwide with different degrees of operational control, risk-adjusted return and liquidity profile. Our funds and investment vehicles provide GEM and its partners with exposure to: Small-Mid Cap Management Buyouts, Private Investments in Public Equities (PIPEs) and select venture investments. GEM's funds include: CITIC-GEM Fund (matured in December 2015), Kinderhook Industries (GP and LP non-voting stakes), GEM Global Yield Fund LLC SCS, GEM India and VC Bank/GEM Mena Fund (GEM exited both its GP and LP stakes in these funds in 2015 and 2010).
Relief is a clinical stage biotechnology company incorporated in May 2013 by three former Merck Serono employees. The company will develop innovative treatments to address high unmet medical needs. Its most advanced program aims at providing a cure for the affections associated with degeneration of the peripheral nervous system (neuropathy). The rights to the intellectual property and its global commercialization were secured from Merck KGaA in a licensing agreement dated August 2015
This news release contains forward-looking statements subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties causing results to potentially differ from the statements made. GEM and Relief Therapeutics cannot be taken responsible in any manner if such statements are not verified in the future.