BOULDER, Colo.–(–)–Edgewise Therapeutics, a preclinical company developing small molecule therapies for musculoskeletal diseases, has announced the closing of a $50 million Series B financing round. The round was co-led by Novo Holdings A/S and U.S. Venture Partners (USVP) and included participation from Deerfield Management, New Leaf Venture Partners, and Cure Duchenne Ventures, as well as existing founding investor OrbiMed Advisors. The financing will support the advancement of Edgewise Therapeutic’s lead product candidate into clinical development for Duchenne and Becker Muscular Dystrophy (DMD and BMD) as well as expansion of the company’s pipeline. Joining the Board of Directors will be Kenneth Harrison, Ph.D., Principal at Novo Ventures and Jonathan Root, M.D., General Partner at USVP; Robert Jackson, M.D., Partner and CSO at Deerfield will join as a Board Observer.
Dr. Root said, “Edgewise combines drug development experience with innovative clinical insights and a cutting-edge muscle physiology platform to identify novel targets providing superior clinical benefit and disease modifying efficacy.”
“We believe the Edgewise approach will arrest muscle damage, the initiating hallmark of disease in muscular dystrophy patients, thus limiting the subsequent inflammatory and fibrotic response while preserving muscle integrity and physical function,” said Dr. Harrison.
“We are excited to have the support of a group of leading life science investors in our Series B financing as we continue to execute against our vision of building a company that will transform the lives of patients living with severe musculoskeletal diseases,” said Kevin Koch, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer, Edgewise Therapeutics.
Debra Miller, CEO, CureDuchenne and CureDuchenne Ventures, added, “CureDuchenne, an organization committed to accelerating research which addresses all potential disease targets in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), is pleased to see another potential therapeutic approach for DMD move into development. We have great respect for the team at Edgewise Therapeutics and CureDuchenne Ventures is pleased to participate in this Series B financing to help speed the progression of the company’s innovative approach into clinical testing.”
“I’m excited to see Edgewise Therapeutics secure this funding and move towards the clinic,” said Barry Byrne, M.D., Ph.D., Director, Powell Gene Therapy Institute at the University of Florida. “Patients affected by DMD and BMD are currently underserved with limited treatment options. Edgewise’s approach has the potential to benefit a broad population of muscular dystrophy patients and represents a new strategy for this devastating disease.”
About Muscular Dystrophy
Muscular dystrophy is a genetic disorder associated with defects in the critical muscle-associated structural protein dystrophin and is characterized by progressive muscle degeneration and weakness. In individuals with neuromuscular conditions such as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, muscle contractions lead to continued rounds of muscle breakdown that the body struggles to repair. Eventually, as patients age, fibrosis and fatty tissue accumulate in the muscle portending a steep decline in physical function that ends with mortality. There remains an unmet need for treatments that reduce muscle breakdown in patients with neuromuscular conditions. Arresting this amplified muscle response will have a dramatic effect on disease progression.
About Edgewise Therapeutics
Edgewise Therapeutics was founded in 2017 by Alan Russell, Ph.D., Peter Thompson, M.D. (Orbimed Advisors) and Badreddin Edris, Ph.D., (Springworks Inc.) and is pioneering the development of first-in-class medicines for the treatment of high morbidity musculoskeletal diseases. Skeletal muscle is the largest organ system in the human body, regulating both force production to enable muscle contraction, locomotion, and postural maintenance and the metabolism of glucose, fatty acid and amino acid. By modulating these processes in skeletal muscle, we create therapeutic agents that will reduce muscle damage, normalize muscle function, decrease mortality and profoundly benefit our patient’s quality of life. To learn more, go to: www.edgewisetx.com
About Novo Holdings A/S
Novo Holdings A/S is a private limited liability company wholly owned by the Novo Nordisk Foundation. It is the holding and investment company of the Novo Group, comprising Novo Nordisk A/S and Novozymes A/S, and is responsible for managing the Novo Nordisk Foundation’s assets. Novo Holdings is recognized as a leading international life science investor with a focus on creating long-term value. As a life science investor, Novo Holdings provides seed and venture capital to development-stage companies and takes significant ownership positions in growth and well-established companies. Novo Holdings also manages a broad portfolio of diversified financial assets. Further information: www.novoholdings.dk
About U.S. Venture Partner
USVP is a leading Silicon valley-based venture capital firm, helping entrepreneurs build world-class companies since 1981. USVP focuses on early stage opportunities in sectors where the Partners have the domain expertise, operating experience and network relationships to contribute to the success of an enterprise. Currently, the firm invests in digital communications, network systems, consumer and business services, media, semiconductors, clean technologies, biopharmaceuticals and medical devices. Further information: www.usvp.com
OrbiMed is a leading healthcare investment firm, with over $14 billion in assets under management. OrbiMed invests globally across the healthcare industry, from start-ups to large multinational corporations, utilizing a range of private equity funds, public equity funds, and royalty/credit funds. OrbiMed maintains offices in New York City, San Francisco, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Mumbai and Herzliya. OrbiMed seeks to be a capital provider of choice, providing tailored financing solutions and global team resources and support to help build world-class healthcare companies. Further information: www.orbimed.com