MONTREAL--(BUSINESS WIRE)--AmorChem is proud to announce a first investment at the Université de Sherbrooke (UdeS). The venture capital fund has entered into an agreement with UdeS and TransferTech Sherbrooke in order to optimize antibiotic molecules developed by Pr. François Malouin and Pr. Éric Marsault. Thanks to the support of Aligo Innovation, the project has received generous funding from the “Programme de soutien à la valorisation et au transfert – Phase II” of the Quebec Ministry for Economy and Innovation. The project is also funded by MITACS and Cystic Fibrosis Canada.
“We are very proud to add a first project from UdeS and TransferTech Sherbrooke in our portfolio. Excellent work is being accomplished at this institution and the efforts to bring the three groups together have resulted in the identification of several promising opportunities. We have been following the work of this complementary team of chemists and microbiologists for a few years and the timing was right. We are confident that several other projects will follow,” says Inès Holzbaur, co-Founder and Managing Partner at AmorChem.
“The transaction between TransferTech Sherbrooke and AmorChem allows a team of antibiotics researchers at UdeS to access significant financing. New efficacious antibiotics are crucial to the progress of modern medicine. We are therefore very happy to have contributed to the promotion of this innovative technology,” comments Michel Lambert, CEO of TransferTech Sherbrooke.
Pr. Malouin and Pr. Marsault have been working on tomatidine, a natural product isolated from the tomato. This molecule and its analogs have shown antibiotic properties which make them potentially interesting for the treatment of infections affecting patients suffering from cystic fibrosis. The team has identified the precise molecular target on which the family of molecules is acting and preliminary results indicate that its activity could be extended more generally to the treatment of Gram negative and Gram positive bacterial infections.
“The confirmation that the bactericidal activity of tomatidine and its analogs could be optimised to treat Gram negative bacteria in addition to Gram positive ones crystallised our interest. There is a high demand for broad spectrum antibiotics able to treat severe infections and we are encouraged by the results obtained by this team,” says Maxime Ranger, General Partner at AmorChem.
“Cystic Fibrosis Canada is delighted that AmorChem is acknowledging the promise of Dr. François Malouin and Dr. Eric Marsault’s work at the Université de Sherbrooke with an initial investment,” said Kelly Grover, President and CEO, Cystic Fibrosis Canada. “This agreement demonstrates the real world impact of the research that Cystic Fibrosis Canada supports, as well as the steady progression and development of cystic fibrosis research. Cystic Fibrosis Canada began funding Dr. Malouin in 2006, and we are excited and proud that this work is maturing to the point of investment.”
AmorChem is a leading early stage venture capital fund launched in 2011 in Montreal. The AmorChem team utilizes its deep understanding of fundamental science to uncover its therapeutic potential and focuses its core expertise in translational research to accelerate therapeutic drug discovery and development across a broad spectrum of disease areas. The fund capitalises on both its venture capital expertise and its entrepreneurial experience to spark the creation of start-up companies and help shape them into the next generation of biotech companies. With over $85M under management, AmorChem has financed over 25 university projects and started up several biotechnology companies from the fruits of this innovative research.