Cambridge fat-burning drug maker Zafgen nabs USD45 million in Series E funding

By VCPOST Staff Reporter

Dec 04, 2013 09:28 PM EST

Fat-burning drug developer Zafgen Inc announced it had raised USD45 million in a Series E financing round. This brings the Cambridge-based firm's total funding to USD114 million to date, according to Boston Business Journal.

The Series E round came from both new and existing investors. The company's new investors include RA Capital Management, Venrock, Brookside Capital, Alta Partners, a private investor, and an undisclosed blue chip investor. Zafgen's existing backers include Third Rock Ventures and Atlas Venture, the report said.

The newly raised capital will be used for further testing of Zafgen's anti-obesity drug, beloranib. The said drug recently emerged from a mid-stage trial showing results of substantial weight loss in 147 obese subjects. During the Phase 2 trial, the subjects were injected with beloranib twice in a week for 12 weeks. There were no serious side effects noted, the report detailed.

Beloranib works by blocking methionine aminopeptidase 2 (MetAP2), an enzyme that makes fatty acids. The drug also helps the body convert stored fats into energy, Boston Business Journal reported.

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