FARMINGTON, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Azitra, Inc., today announced that the company has closed a $2.9 million Series A venture round led by Bios Partners, bringing the total amount of outside funding raised to $3.75 million. Azitra is a preclinical biotechnology company that aims to treat skin conditions by using the skin’s own microbiome to create innovative, inexpensive, and sustainable treatments for skin diseases ranging from eczema to staph infections. Previous seed funding sources include Peter Thiel’s Breakout Labs program to support startups working in advanced science and technology fields, and other non-dilutive grants.
Azitra’s lead proprietary candidate, "AZT-01," is a recombinant strain of a safe skin bacterium that secretes therapeutic proteins locally into the skin. These bacteria, when applied topically on the skin using a cream, will colonize the skin and restore the microbiome while treating the skin condition with therapeutic proteins. The funding will allow Azitra to continue testing its platform across a variety of skin conditions such as eczema, rare genetic skin diseases and cosmetic applications.
“The current approach of only addressing a disease’s symptoms alone is ineffective, and the microbiome is a nascent area of groundbreaking science that has enormous potential,” said Azitra co-founder Travis Whitfill. “That’s why we were passionate about launching a commercial organization that harnesses the power of the skin’s own microbiome to develop a new kind of dermatology treatment. Such treatments are potentially safer, more highly targeted, and work better with fewer side effects than what’s currently available for often intractable conditions.”
“Bios Partners is excited to invest in breakthrough technology within the microbiome market, and we believe Azitra has the capacity to be a paradigm shift in the way skin disorders are treated,” said Dr. Aaron Fletcher, Managing Partner at Bios Partners. “Azitra takes the microbiome market to a new level of patient care by not only exploiting the advantages of a proper skin microbiome, but also providing a delivery mechanism for missing proteins of various skin disorders.”
The human body maintains nearly ten times as many microbial cells as human cells, according to NIH’s Human Microbiome Project, and scientists are just beginning to harness their potential.
“Many of the things we put on the skin will intentionally or unintentionally interfere with its normal ecology,” said Dr. Leonard M. Milstone, Senior Research Scientist in Dermatology at Yale University, and consultant to Azitra. “Devising therapies that utilize the normal ecology of the skin is sensible and innovative.”
Azitra, Inc. is a preclinical company that aims to harness the power of the microbiome on the skin. Since 2014, the company has been working with world-leading scientists in dermatology, microbiology, and microbiomics to improve and test its platform. For more information, visit www.azitrainc.com.
About Bios Partners
Bios Partners is a venture capital firm focused on investing in early-stage biopharmaceutical and medical device companies. Founded in 2014 and based in Fort Worth, TX, the firm utilizes an experienced team of industry professionals to actively collaborate with its investment portfolio companies and enhance stakeholder value. The investment in Azitra, Inc. is one of seven new investments made through the firm's recently closed Bios Fund I.