ENA Respiratory Advances COVID-19 Preventative Therapy through AU$32 Million Funding Round

ENA Respiratory通过3200万澳元融资推动COVID-19预防治疗

2021-06-16 15:30:08 BioSpace


Round jointly led by Brandon Capital and Minderoo Foundation with co-investment from Uniseed will support the clinical development of INNA-051 Company appoints President and Chief Scientific Officer of the COPD Foundation and respiratory therapy expert Ruth Tal-Singer, Ph.D., to Board of Directors SYDNEY, Australia, June 15, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ENA Respiratory, a biotechnology company developing a first-in-class nasal spray for the prevention of COVID-19 and other respiratory viral infections, announced today that it secured up to AU$32m investment and appointed Ruth Tal-Singer, Ph.D., to its Board of Directors. The new financing will advance INNA-051, ENA Respiratory’s lead clinical candidate being developed to activate innate immunity in the nose, the primary site of most respiratory virus infections including COVID-19. The company is poised to initiate its Phase I human safety study of INNA-051 in Australia in the coming weeks. The milestone-based financing round was jointly led by Australian life science investors Brandon Capital Partners and Minderoo Foundation, with co-investment from Uniseed. “The COVID-19 pandemic continues to be a major health crisis worldwide. Alongside vaccines, there is a need for complementary approaches to help protect the most vulnerable people and also provide protection against emerging variants,” said Christophe Demaison, Ph.D., co-founder and CEO of ENA Respiratory. “INNA-051 is seeking to address this need. The financing announced today from the Minderoo Foundation and existing investors will expedite development of INNA-051 with the aim to demonstrate efficacy against COVID-19 in the clinic.” Unlike other potential prophylactic approaches to COVID, INNA-051 directly stimulates the host’s innate immune defence that plays a key role in clearing viruses and other pathogens. A gold-standard animal study performed by Public Health England (PHE) and published in the peer-reviewed journal EBioMedicine1 demonstrated that ENA’s nasal spray reduces COVID-19 viral replication by up to 96 percent. If humans respond in a similar way, the spray could be used to protect people very quickly from infection and lower community transmission. Based on its mechanism of action and non-clinical studies demonstrating efficacy against multiple, non-related respiratory viruses, INNA-051 has the potential to prevent existing and emerging respiratory viral infections, such as COVID-19 and its variants. “We recognize that in addition to vaccines, the world needs safe, convenient, broad-spectrum anti-viral therapies to win the fight against COVID-19,” said Chris Smith, Ph.D., Chairman of ENA Respiratory. “INNA-051 could be incredibly helpful in protecting at-risk populations such as health workers, the elderly and immunocompromised patients against existing and emerging variants. Because INNA-051 is not virus-specific, it could also play a key role beyond fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, in combating seasonal flu or any future respiratory viral outbreaks.” Ruth Tal-Singer, Ph.D., COPD Foundation President and Chief Scientific Officer, Joins ENA Board of Directors The company also announced the appointment of Ruth Tal-Singer, Ph.D., to its Board of Directors. U.S.-based Dr Tal-Singer is internationally recognized as an innovative, patient-focused, and highly analytical health care leader and clinical scientist with extensive research and development experience. Her wide-ranging technical and scientific knowledge comprises molecular biology, immunology, application of digital technology and experimental medicine trials. She has a proven history of successfully leading international public and private partnerships through critical advancements and progressing clinical trials and large observational cohorts. She currently serves as President and Chief Scientific Officer of the nonprofit COPD Foundation, where she leads the organization’s mission to accelerate the development and adoption of novel treatments that improve the lives of individuals with COPD, bronchiectasis and nontuberculous mycobacterial (NTM) lung disease. Previously, she held several senior roles at GSK Pharmaceuticals, including Vice President of Medical Innovation, Vice President in Respiratory R&D, and Medicine Development Leader. She was elected as GSK Senior Fellow for advancing innovation and mentoring early-career scientists. “Dr Tal-Singer brings nearly 25 years of experience leading the research and development of respiratory therapies, from therapeutic target identification to phases I-IV research and regulatory approvals, as well as collaborations with academic and industry partners,” Dr Demaison said. “Her significant expertise in research, patient and community support, public education and advocacy will help guide us as we accelerate the development of INNA-051 to address the COVID-19 pandemic and other significant respiratory illnesses.” Dr Tal-Singer received her critical care nursing certification from Tel Aviv University and her Ph.D. in molecular biology and microbiology from the University of Pennsylvania. Earlier in her career, she served as an officer in the Israeli Defense Forces Medical Corps and was assistant head nurse of the pediatric critical care unit at Sheba Medical Center in Israel. “The COVID-19 pandemic showed the significant need for new therapies to prevent and treat respiratory viruses that impact millions around the globe each year,” Dr Tal-Singer said. “ENA Respiratory’s novel therapy stimulates innate immunity to target viruses in the nose. It has the potential to impact the way we treat and prevent not just COVID-19, but influenza, the common cold, and other respiratory illnesses. I’m thrilled to join the Board as the company launches its next stage of clinical research.” A video accompanying this announcement is available at: https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/efd18c2d-ad2e-43fd-b289-59a562039455 Notes to Editors If you would like to arrange an interview, please contact: Glenn Silver, Finn Partners, +1 973 818 8198, glenn.silver@finnpartners.com Caleb Hulme-Moir, Mana Communications, +64 (0)220 698 065, chm@manacommunications.com Ciara Byrne, Mana Communications, +61 (0)413 519 430, cb@manacommunications.com About ENA Respiratory and INNA-051 ENA Respiratory is aiming to transform the treatment and prevention of respiratory viral infections in at-risk populations. The company is based in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia. INNA-051 is a potent innate immune agonist that targets the receptor TLR2/6. It is being developed for intranasal delivery to target the primary entry site of viral respiratory infections as most respiratory viruses, including SARS-CoV-2 and influenza, initially infect and replicate in nasal mucosal epithelial cells which express TLR2 and TLR6 on their surface. Topical nasal administration of INNA-051 and close analogues have been shown in pre-clinical studies to protect treated animals from SARS-CoV-2 (causative agent of COVID-19), influenza virus (flu) and rhinovirus (common cold) infections. Key features of INNA-051 intranasal administration include limited minimal or no systemic bioavailability, minimal or no systemic pro-inflammatory cytokine release, no direct type I interferon upregulation, durable immune response supporting twice-weekly administration and compatibility with vaccine and intranasal corticosteroids. For more information, please visit https://enarespiratory.com About Brandon Capital Partners Brandon Capital Partners is Australasia’s leading life science venture capital investor. As manager of the Medical Research Commercialisation Fund (MRCF), Brandon Capital works with scientists, clinicians and entrepreneurs from company formation and seed investment through to expansion capital, supporting life science companies from proof-of-concept through to commercialisation. The MRCF is a unique collaboration between major Australian pension funds, the Australian and New Zealand governments, Australian state governments and more than 50 leading medical research institutes and research hospitals. The MRCF supports the development and commercialisation of early-stage biomedical discoveries associated with member organisations, providing both capital and expertise to guide the successful development of new therapies. The MRCF has supported more than 46 start-up companies to date, most of which were founded by the MRCF. Brandon Capital currently has more than A$800 million under management and offices in Melbourne, Sydney and Palo Alto. For more information about Brandon Capital Partners and the MRCF, visit www.brandoncapital.com.au and www.mrcf.com.au About the Minderoo Foundation Established by Andrew and Nicola Forrest in 2001, Minderoo Foundation is a modern philanthropic organisation seeking to break down barriers, innovate and drive positive, lasting change. Minderoo Foundation is proudly Australian, with more than AUD $2 billion committed to 10 key initiatives spanning from ocean research and ending slavery, to collaboration against cancer and building community projects. At the height of the pandemic, Minderoo Foundation made available up to $320 million to assist Australia’s effort in fighting COVID-19, including the purchase of millions of items of PPE equipment and quadrupling Australia’s daily testing capacity. Minderoo Foundation is a founding partner of the International COVID-19 Data Research Alliance. For more information, please https://www.minderoo.org About Uniseed Uniseed is Australia’s longest running early-stage commercialisation fund that makes investments in research emanating from five of Australia’s leading research organisations – The University of Queensland, The University of Sydney, The University of New South Wales, The University of Melbourne and the CSIRO. Uniseed is a mutual fund, owned by research organisations, for research organisations. The fund facilitates the commercialisation of its research partners’ most promising intellectual property and secures targeted investment in resulting products and technologies. Uniseed has supported 59 start-up companies to date, being the seed investor in most of these. For more information, visit: www.uniseed.com References Proud PC, Tsitoura D, Watson RJ et al. Prophylactic intranasal administration of a TLR2/6 agonist reduces upper respiratory tract viral shedding in a SARS-CoV-2 challenge ferret model. EBioMedicine. 2021 Jan;63:103153. doi: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2020.103153. Epub 2020 Dec 3.
由Brandon Capital和Minderoo Foundation联合领导的一轮由Uniseed共同投资的项目将支持INNA-051的临床开发 公司任命COPD基金会总裁兼首席科学官和呼吸治疗专家Ruth Tal-Singer博士为董事会成员 澳大利亚悉尼,2021年6月15日(环球新闻通讯社)--生物技术公司ENA Respiratory今天宣布,它获得了高达3200万澳元的投资,并任命Ruth Tal-Singer博士为董事会成员。ENA Respiratory是一家开发一流鼻腔喷雾剂的生物技术公司,用于预防COVID-19和其他呼吸道病毒感染。新的融资将推进INNA-051,这是ENA respiratory的领先临床候选产品,正在开发用于激活鼻子的先天免疫,鼻子是包括COVID-19在内的大多数呼吸道病毒感染的主要部位。该公司准备在未来几周在澳大利亚启动INNA-051的第一阶段人体安全研究。这一基于里程碑的融资轮由澳大利亚生命科学投资者Brandon Capital Partners和Minderoo Foundation联合领投,UniSeed联合投资。 “新冠肺炎疫情仍是全球范围内的重大健康危机。除了疫苗之外,还需要有补充的方法来帮助保护最脆弱的人群,并提供针对新出现的变异的保护,“ENA Respiratory联合创始人兼首席执行官Christophe Demaison博士说。“INNA-051正在寻求解决这一需求。Minderoo基金会和现有投资者今天宣布的融资将加快INNA-051的开发,目的是在诊所中展示对抗COVID-19的功效。“ 与其他预防COVID的潜在方法不同,INNA-051直接刺激宿主的先天免疫防御,后者在清除病毒和其他病原体方面发挥关键作用。英国公共卫生部(PHE)进行的一项金标准动物研究发表在同行评议期刊《eBioMedicine》1上,该研究显示,ENA的鼻腔喷雾剂可减少高达96%的COVID-19病毒复制。如果人类也有类似的反应,喷雾剂就可以用来保护人们不受感染,降低社区传播。基于其作用机制和非临床研究证明对多种非相关呼吸道病毒有效,INNA-051具有预防现有和新出现的呼吸道病毒感染的潜力,如COVID-19及其变体。 “我们认识到,除了疫苗,世界还需要安全、便捷、广谱的抗病毒疗法来赢得抗击新冠肺炎的斗争,”ENA呼吸公司董事长克里斯·史密斯博士说。“INNA-051在保护高危人群如卫生工作者、老年人和免疫缺陷患者免受现有和新出现的变异体的侵害方面具有难以置信的帮助。由于INNA-051不是病毒特异性的,它还可以在抗击COVID-19大流行之外,在抗击季节性流感或未来任何呼吸道病毒爆发方面发挥关键作用。“ Ruth Tal-Singer博士,COPD基金会主席兼首席科学官,加入ENA董事会 该公司还宣布任命露丝·塔尔-辛格博士为董事会成员。美国的塔尔-辛格博士是国际公认的一位具有创新精神、以病人为中心、高度分析的卫生保健领导者和临床科学家,具有广泛的研究和开发经验。她广泛的技术和科学知识包括分子生物学,免疫学,数字技术的应用和实验医学试验。她有成功领导国际公共和私营伙伴关系的经验,通过重大进展和不断进行的临床试验和大规模观察队列。她目前担任非营利的COPD基金会的主席和首席科学官,在那里,她领导着该组织的使命,加速开发和采用改善COPD、支气管扩张和非结核分枝杆菌(NTM)肺病患者生活的新型治疗方法。此前,她在葛兰素史克制药担任多个高级职位,包括医疗创新副总裁、呼吸研发副总裁、医药开发负责人。她被选为葛兰素史克高级研究员,以促进创新和指导早期职业科学家。 Demaison博士说:“Tal-Singer博士在呼吸疗法的研究和开发方面拥有近25年的领导经验,从治疗靶点的确定到I-IV阶段的研究和监管批准,以及与学术和行业合作伙伴的合作。”“她在研究、患者和社区支持、公共教育和宣传方面的重要专长将有助于指导我们加快INNA-051的开发,以应对COVID-19大流行和其他重大呼吸道疾病。” 塔尔-辛格博士获得了特拉维夫大学的重症护理认证和博士学位。来自宾夕法尼亚大学的分子生物学和微生物学。在她职业生涯的早期,她曾在以色列国防军医疗团担任军官,并是以色列Sheba医疗中心儿科重症监护室的助理护士长。 塔尔-辛格博士说:“COVID-19大流行表明,迫切需要新的疗法来预防和治疗每年影响全球数百万人的呼吸道病毒。”“ENA Respiratory的新疗法刺激了对鼻子中目标病毒的先天免疫力。它不仅有可能影响我们治疗和预防COVID-19的方式,也有可能影响流感、普通感冒和其他呼吸系统疾病的方式。我很高兴能加入董事会,因为该公司开始了下一阶段的临床研究。“ 该公告的视频可在https://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/attachmentng/EFD18C2D-AD2E-43FD-B289-59A562039455上查阅 编辑须知 如欲安排面试,请联系: Glenn Silver Finn Partners Glenn Silver Finn Partners Glenn Silver Finn Partners Glenn Silver Finn Caleb Hulme-Moir Mana Communications电话:+64(0)220 698 065+64(0)220 698 065电子邮件:chm@manacommunications.com Ciara Byrne Mana Communications电话:+61(0)413 519 430电子邮件:cb@manacommunications.com 关于ENA呼吸和INNA-051 ENA Respiratory的目标是改变高危人群呼吸道病毒感染的治疗和预防。公司总部设在澳大利亚墨尔本和悉尼。 INNA-051是一种靶向TLR2/6受体的强效天然免疫激动剂。由于大多数呼吸道病毒,包括新型冠状病毒和流感,最初在鼻粘膜上皮细胞中感染和复制,而鼻粘膜上皮细胞表面表达TLR2和TLR6。临床前研究显示,局部鼻腔给药INNA-051和相近类似物可保护受治疗动物免受新型冠状病毒(COVID-19病原体)、流感病毒(流感)和鼻病毒(普通感冒)感染。INNA-051鼻腔给药的主要特点包括有限的最小或无全身生物利用度、最小或无全身促炎细胞因子释放、无直接I型干扰素上调、支持每周两次给药的持久免疫应答以及与疫苗和鼻腔皮质类固醇的相容性。 欲了解更多信息,请访问https://enarespiratory.com 关于Brandon Capital Partners Brandon Capital Partners是澳大拉西亚领先的生命科学风险投资公司。作为医学研究商业化基金(MRCF)的经理,Brandon Capital与科学家、临床医生和企业家合作,从公司组建、种子投资到扩展资本,支持生命科学公司从概念验证到商业化。MRCF是澳大利亚主要养老基金、澳大利亚和新西兰政府、澳大利亚州政府以及50多家领先的医学研究机构和研究医院之间的独特合作。MRCF支持与成员组织相关的早期生物医学发现的开发和商业化,提供资本和专门知识以指导新疗法的成功开发。迄今为止,该基金已支助了46家以上的初创公司,其中大多数是由该基金创办的。 布兰登资本目前管理着超过8亿澳元的资产,在墨尔本、悉尼和帕洛阿尔托设有办事处。 欲了解有关Brandon Capital Partners和MRCF的更多信息,请访问www.brandoncapital.com.au和www.MRCF.com.au 关于Minderoo基金会 Minderoo基金会由Andrew和Nicola Forrest于2001年成立,是一个现代慈善组织,致力于打破障碍、创新和推动积极、持久的变革。Minderoo基金会是澳大利亚的一个基金会,其资金超过20亿澳元,用于10项重要的倡议,从海洋研究和结束奴隶制,到合作抗癌和建设社区项目。在疫情最严重时,Minderoo基金会提供了高达3.2亿美元的资金,以协助澳大利亚抗击新冠肺炎疫情,包括购买数百万件个人防护设备,将澳大利亚的日检测能力提高两倍。明德鲁基金会是国际新冠数据研究联盟的创始合作伙伴。 更多信息,请https://www.minderoo.org 关于Uniseed Uniseed是澳大利亚运行时间最长的早期商业化基金,投资于澳大利亚五个主要研究机构的研究--昆士兰大学、悉尼大学、新南威尔士大学、墨尔本大学和CSIRO。Uniseed是一个共同基金,由研究机构拥有,为研究机构服务。该基金促进其研究伙伴最有前途的知识产权的商业化,并确保对由此产生的产品和技术进行有针对性的投资。到目前为止,Uniseed已经支持了59家初创公司,是其中大多数公司的种子投资者。 欲了解更多信息,请访问:www.uniseed.com 参考文献 Proud PC,Tsitoura D,Watson RJ等人。在新型冠状病毒攻击雪貂模型中,预防性鼻腔给药TLR2/6激动剂可减少上呼吸道病毒的脱落。生物医学。1月20日至21日;63:103153。DOI:10.1016/J.Ebiom.2020.103153。Epub 2020年12月3日。