Funding doubled for company working on breakthrough auto-immune disease therapeutics

June 30, 2022 - 3 minutes
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A Paris-based biotech company developing products for auto-immune diseases, announced today (June 30) that it has almost doubled its initial funding from two companies.

The initial funding for Ermium Therapeutics of €6.3 million ($6.57 million) now stands at €12.3 million ($12.83 million) and has been supplied by Kurma Partners and Fountain Healthcare Partners.

Ermium discovers and develops orally-available small molecules aimed at addressing a range of chronic auto-immune diseases, which affect millions of people worldwide, and particularly type I interferon-mediated diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), dermatomyositis, Sjögren syndrome, and monogenic interferonopathies.

The company’s compounds are intended to be first-in-class acting on a G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR), namely the CXCR4 chemokine receptor, via a totally novel mechanism of action.

Inflammatory cytokines

The main property of Ermium CXCR4-targeted functionally selective immunomodulators is to potently abolish the release of type I interferons by immune cells, and also other key inflammatory cytokines.

The €6 million proceeds will be used to reach the milestones of drug candidate selection, extend the nonclinical development package, and drive continued efforts on the pharmacological package in support of the early clinical development program in SLE and other auto-immune diseases.

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Fountain Healthcare Partners, a transatlantic life science investor, is joining and widening the Ermium Therapeutics initial investment syndicate composed of Kurma Partners, Eurazeo, Domain Therapeutics, and Erganeo.

Joël Crouzet, CEO of Ermium Therapeutics said, “I am thrilled to close this extension funding which reflects the confidence of our historical investors along with the commitment of Fountain Healthcare Partners which we are welcoming with enthusiasm.”

Crouzet said the funding further validates all the efforts the company team has made since inception, and also the promising therapeutic potential of the first in class immunomodulators they are developing.

He added, “Moreover, it will allow our program to move on up to the selection of a drug candidate, with the goal to address a huge medical need for patients suffering from interferonopathies.”

Aidan King, managing partner of Fountain Healthcare Partners is a newly-appointed member of Ermium Therapeutics board of directors.

He said: “We were very impressed by the work accomplished by the team at Ermium Therapeutics. We were quickly convinced of the significant commercial opportunity that could be realized with this investment and the potential application of Ermium’s lead development candidate across a variety of auto-immune disease indications.

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Interferonopathies

“We are particularly delighted to join Kurma, Eurazeo, Domain Therapeutics, and Erganeo in advancing Ermium Therapeutics first in class compounds to address the high unmet medical need in interferonopathies such as SLE.”

Ermium was founded in June 2019 by Jean-Philippe Herbeuval, Kurma Partners, Domain Therapeutics and Erganeo. Ermium’s breakthrough first in class compounds are CXCR4 targeted functionally selective immunomodulators. These orally available compounds are aimed to be developed for auto-immune disease indications.

Thierry Laugel, managing partner of Kurma Partners and also a member of Ermium Therapeutics board of directors said: “We are particularly proud and impressed by the advances performed by Ermium Therapeutics since the initial funding, based on breakthrough science and a highly innovative approach for critical medical needs such as SLE. This extension funding will accelerate the company development and allow its exciting program to move on towards the first steps of non-clinical development.”

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