Pleotherapy platform focuses on drug repositioning.

Pharnext has put together a €2.5 million round of financing. The proceeds will fund the continuing clinical development of Pharnext’s Pleodrug™ for Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease.

“This round of fundraising will enable us to accelerate the first-in-man clinical trials of our Pleodrug in CMT and boost our research into the generation of other Pleodrugs for six other serious diseases including Alzheimer’s disease,” says Pharnext’s founder and CEO Daniel Cohen.

Pleotherapy involves a single, patented Pleodrug combining mini-doses of several off-patent drugs already approved by health authorities for the treatment of diseases that are biologically but not clinically linked to the target indication. The Pleodrug discovery engine is based on Nexus, a genomic process that makes it possible to efficiently create these and which is applicable to most diseases, Pharnext says.

When assembled into a single pill, these cocktails are expected to be safe in humans because they are made up of approved drugs and each drug is administered at a very lower dose compared to that for the standard indication.

PXT3003 went into Phase II trials in patients with type 1A CMT disease in December 2010. It is a combination of three approved drugs at low dose. Pharnext also has an Alzheimer disease program, which is at the in vivo screening stage. The firm has six additional programs, all at the discovery stage: type 2 diabetes, toxic neuropathies, ALS, multiple sclerosis, polycystic kidney disease, and hypertension.

The Alzheimer program is financed by ISI (Oseo’s strategic manufacturing innovation program) to the tune of €10.4 million over 6 years. Pharnext is leading the project and will reportedly received €7.3 million in November 2010. Oseo is also backing development in CMT with a €3.7 million grant.

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