New privately held firm will focus on HDL therapies.

Pfizer has decided to sell one of its research divisions, Esperion Therapeutics, to an enterprise funded by a syndicate of investors. Esperion also reports that it has completed a $22.75 million series A tranche financing.

As part of the spinout, Esperion will take with it a small molecule dual inhibitor of fatty acid and cholesterol synthesis for the treatment of dyslipidemias. Pfizer discontiuned research on this compound while still in early preclinical development, according to Rick Anderson, Pfizer spokesman.

The firm will focus R&D activities on the cardiovascular and metabolic disease space. Pfizer retains selected programs and related assets as well as a financial interest in Esperion, which will operate as a privately held, independent entity.

Aisling Capital, Alta Partners, and Domain Associates led the financing round, which also included Arboretum Ventures. The money will go toward Esperion’s lead program for the treatment of dyslipidemias and other HDL-related therapeutics.

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