Biotech firm Thesan Pharmaceuticals closes $49M in Series B round

By Nicel Jane Avellana

Feb 25, 2014 12:46 PM EST

Thesan Pharmaceuticals secured $49 million for its Series B funding round, a statement about the funding said.

The financing was led by current backer Novo Ventures. SV Life Sciences, Lundbeckfond Ventures and Novartis Venture Fund also participated in the round. As part of the deal, Michael Ross of SV Life Sciences and Mette Kirstine Agger of Lundbeckfond Ventures will be joining the Board of Directors of Thesan Pharmaceuticals. Peter Bisgaard and Tiba Aynechi of Novo Ventures (US) Inc and Novartis Venture Fund's Giovanni Ferrara are already part of the biotechnology firm's board, the statement said.

Thesan Pharmaceuticals is focused on developing and commercializing therapies for acne, atopic dermatitis and other skin diseases. In the statement, Thesan's Chief Executive Officer Gordon Foulkes said, "Our focus remains the development of new chemical entities with novel mechanisms of action. All drug candidates in our expanded pipeline are NCEs and new targets. We are very pleased with the deep financial backing provided by four top tier venture funds, which puts us in an unparalleled position as a biopharma to develop new drugs in this area."

A Denmark-based limited liability company, Novo A/S is a portfolio company of the Novo Nordisk Foundation. It is the Novo Group's holding company charged with managing the over $30 billion assets of the Foundation. Novo A/S gives seed and venture capital funding to development stage firms and obtains substantial ownership stakes in established life sciences firms, the statement said.

Novo Ventures (US) Inc Partner Peter Bisgaard said about the investment, "We believe Thesan offers a unique opportunity for developing completely new classes of dermatological agents, which can be moved rapidly into clinical development. Dermatology has been dominated in the last 20 years by reformulated or repurposed products. We see Thesan as leading the charge to bring novel medicines to patients." 

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