Rare Disease Accelerator Cydan Raises $34 Million

October 17, 2017

Rare Daily Staff

Cydan said it closed a $34 million venture round to fund the company’s efforts to develop innovative therapies for rare genetic diseases.

Existing Cydan investor New Enterprise Associates led the round, which included new Cydan investor Longitude Capital. Existing investors who participated in the financing include Pfizer Venture Investments, Alexandria Venture Investments. The proceeds from this round will fund Cydan II, which is continuing the mission of Cydan Development.

Under its accelerator approach, Cydan identifies drug candidates for rare, monogenic disease from academic, government, biotech, and pharmaceutical sources. Its internal team will work to de-risk the asset and advance it through preclinical development.

If successful, Cydan establishes independent companies that can advance these programs through clinical development and regulatory approval to carry them to patients. The syndicate of Cydan investors will fund Series A financings for these new companies to help them reach human proof-of-concept.

“Our initial financing enabled us to validate our model; in less than four years, we evaluated numerous diseases and multiple therapeutic approaches to successfully launch two, well-funded companies that are quickly advancing promising new treatments for patients in need,” said Chris Adams, co-founder and CEO of Cydan. “This round of financing shows continued confidence by our syndicate that our approach is effective, and extends our operations for another four years, increasing our ability to positively impact outcomes for patients with rare genetic diseases.”

Vtesse, Cydan’s first spinout company, launched in January 2015, is developing a novel therapy for Niemann-Pick Disease Type C. Vtesse was acquired by Sucampo Pharmaceuticals in April 2017 for an upfront consideration of $200 million. Cydan’s second company, Imara, was launched in 2016 and is developing IMR-687, a novel treatment for Sickle Cell disease. Imara recently completed a phase 1 clinical trial in healthy volunteers with its lead candidate, IMR-687, and plans to initiate a phase 2 study in adult patients with SCD by the end of 2017.

October 17, 2017

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