Deal marks Fund’s first investment in Europe and advances its mission of enabling the launch of two to four antimicrobials by 2030
BOSTON, Jan. 5, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — The AMR Action Fund, the world’s largest public-private partnership investing in biotech companies that are developing antimicrobials, announced today that it has invested in BioVersys AG, a clinical-stage company based in Basel, Switzerland. The transaction marks the Fund’s first investment in Europe and is an important step toward building an international portfolio of companies that are developing urgently needed antimicrobials.
"BioVersys is developing antimicrobials that target some of the most menacing drug-resistant bacteria in the world today, and we are thrilled to welcome the company to our portfolio," AMR Action Fund Chief Investment Officer Martin Heidecker, PhD, said. "The candidates in its pipeline have the potential to significantly improve care for patients suffering from intractable infections for which there are few, if any, effective treatments. We are eager to work with the BioVersys team to help bring these therapeutics to patients."
Drug-resistant bacterial infections were associated with nearly 5 million deaths in 2019 and directly killed 1.27 million people, more than HIV or malaria. BioVersys’ lead candidate, BV100, is being developed for lung and bloodstream infections caused by carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii (CRAB). Recent research published in The Lancet showed that CRAB infections could kill as many as 100,000 people a year. The World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have identified CRAB as one of the highest-priority pathogens for which new treatments are needed.
BioVersys’ pipeline also includes BV200, which is being developed for patients who have severe hospital-acquired Staphylococcus aureus infections, BV300, a broad-spectrum antibiotic that represents a novel chemical class known as Pyrrolocytosines, and BVL-GSK098 a new small molecule for the treatment of tuberculosis that overcomes resistance to ethionamide.
"BioVersys aspires to impact many millions of people afflicted with AMR by addressing some of the most urgent and highly drug-resistant infections. The AMR Action Fund will be a valuable partner as we advance our programs into Phase 2 clinical trials and beyond so that these treatments can reach patients as soon as possible," said Dr. Marc Gitzinger, CEO and founder of BioVersys AG. "It is fortuitous and timely that the AMR Action Fund was set up to invest in the most promising companies combatting the AMR crisis, and we are optimistic that the private sector will continue to invest in this critically urgent field of medicine."
The AMR Action Fund joined BioVersys’ Series C round, which was significantly oversubscribed by both existing and new investors from diverse geographies.
"With our investment in BioVersys, we continue to deliver on our mission of driving innovation and investment into small biotechs, which are responsible for the vast majority of antibiotic research and development," CEO Henry Skinner, PhD, said. "While we will continue to invest in promising and innovative antimicrobial companies, it is important that policymakers around the world also take action and address the market failures that impede the development of new antibiotics and threaten patients everywhere."
For more information contact Chris Sweeney: firstname.lastname@example.org.
About The AMR Action Fund is the world’s largest public-private partnership investing in antibiotics, antifungals, and other antimicrobial treatments. The Fund will invest approximately US$1 billion into clinical-stage biotech companies to help bring new antibiotics to market. The concept of the AMR Action Fund was developed by the International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations and its member biopharmaceutical companies, in collaboration with the World Health Organization, the European Investment Bank, and the Wellcome Trust. Investors in the AMR Action Fund include: Almirall; Amgen; Bayer; Boehringer Ingelheim; Boehringer Ingelheim Foundation; Chugai; Daiichi-Sankyo; Eisai; Eli Lilly and Company; the European Investment Bank (with the support of the European Commission under Horizon 2020, the 2014-2020 European Union research and innovation program); GlaxoSmithKline; Johnson & Johnson; LEO Pharma; Lundbeck; Menarini; Merck; Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany; Novartis; Novo Nordisk; Novo Nordisk Foundation; Pfizer; Roche; Shionogi; Takeda; Teva; UCB; and the Wellcome Trust.
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