Pulmatrix has secured $30.2 million in a Series B financing round and another $2.2 million from the NIAID. The grant will support preclinical studies to extend the spectrum and efficacy of PUR003, which is in Phase Ib/IIa development for influenza treatment.
Pulmatrix hopes that the NIAID grant will be able to advance next-generation formulations of PUR003 into IND-enabling toxicology studies. PUR003 is designed to treat, prevent, and reduce transmission of a spectrum of respiratory pathogens. Pulmatrix is developing the compound as a treatment for various respiratory infections, like in the reduction of acute exacerbations of progressive respiratory diseases including asthma and COPD.
Proceeds from the financing round will be used to enhance Pulmatrix’ R&D capabilities to progress its class of host-targeted therapies that treat and prevent a range of respiratory diseases by harnessing the airway and lungs’ natural biophysical properties and host-defense mechanisms. Pulmatrix expects to leverage the money to initiate multiple clinical trials in 2010 and 2011.
“We believe that Pulmatrix’ therapies are uniquely positioned to address respiratory diseases in a fundamentally new way, which could result in game-changing improvements in the lives of patients with many different types of respiratory diseases,” notes Lauren Silverman, Ph.D., managing director, Novartis Venture Funds, which co-led the Series B round with ARCH Venture Partners. They were joined by existing investors, Polaris Venture Partners and 5AM Ventures.