Meletios Therapeutics, a French biotech company, announced today (November 2) that it has been named one of 75 winners of the European Innovation Council (EIC) Accelerator program and will receive €5.2 million ($5.1 million) in funding from the European Commission.
The company specializes in the research and development of antiviral treatments and says the funding will be used for the clinical development of Meletios Therapeutics’ lead candidate, MLT103. More specifically it will use it for the funding of a phase 2 clinical trial in the treatment of SARS-CoV-2 infection as a first indication.
MLT103 is an orally administered small molecule antiviral drug that has already proven its safety in humans and can target key functions of the cell metabolism that are hijacked by viruses for replication.
The funding will consist of a €2.5 million grant and a €2.7 million equity investment through the European Innovation Council Fund (EIC Fund).
It was awarded following its selection among more than 1,000 other companies in all fields, as part of the Accelerator program set up by the European Commission to support and accelerate the development of European start-ups and companies at the cutting edge of innovation. Meletios also stands out among the 20% of awarded companies whose CEO is a woman.
Companies selected in this program receive financial support and a range of services to accelerate their development, offering access to experts, investors, and other major players in the European ecosystem. Since its launch in March 2021, the European Innovation Council’s Accelerator program has received more than 7,000 innovative project proposals, authorized more than 4,000 to submit a full application, and selected 313 winners.
Meletios Therapeutics will advance MLT103
“Meletios Therapeutics has been committed since its creation to the development of a new generation of antiviral treatments in response to the ever-increasing emergence of new viral diseases, including the recent Covid-19,” said Catherine Martre, chief executive officer at Meletios Therapeutics.
“Obtaining this highly selective financing is a very important vote of confidence and support that will allow us to rapidly advance the clinical development phases of our compound. These steps are in line with our objective to offer a rapid and effective solution to this major global health problem. Alternatively, we are actively pursuing the development of our other candidates based on cutting-edge technologies such as the one developed at Institut Pasteur.”
MLT103 has demonstrated a dual antiviral and anti-inflammatory efficacy against the entire family of coronaviruses (including the highly pathogenic MERS, SARS-CoV-1, and SARS-CoV-2), as well as against the H1N1 influenza virus.