Strasbourg, France, January 14, 2020 – Urania Therapeutics announces today that it will benefit from €1.7 million ($1.9M) Deeptech financing from Bpifrance in addition to its recent seed funding round. The Deeptech plan, initiated by the French government and deployed by Bpifrance since 2019, aims to boost highly innovative and breakthrough projects emerging from fundamental research with attractive dedicated financing tools.
Urania recently closed a €3.5M ($3.9M) seed funding round led by Advent France Biotechnology with co-investors Cap’Innov Est (CIE) and NovAliX, a drug discovery focused CRO with strong capabilities in biophysics. This additional €1.7M ($1.9M) funding from Bpifrance, including €850k ($945k) in subsidies and an equal amount of repayable advances, will support the development of Urania’s ‘readthrough’ drug candidates. Proceeds will be used to fund further chemistry and pharmacology studies for the company’s lead programs.
Jean-Paul Renaud, co-founder, president and CSO of Urania Therapeutics said: “We are very proud to have been awarded this Deeptech financing. It’s an important recognition of the disruptive nature of Urania’s therapeutic approach.”
Alban Stamm, in charge of innovation at Bpifrance, said: “At Bpifrance we support bold science and entrepreneurial spirit, we believe that Urania combines both high level science and an innovative funding model with venture capital from AFB and CIE and an in-kind contribution from preclinical expert CRO NovAliX. Urania is one of the first companies in the Grand-Est region to benefit from the Deeptech development financing tools. This choice of funding was driven by the cutting-edge quality of its science, its capacity to identify unique first-in-class drug candidates and the upstream nature of the project, coming from the IGBMC, an internationally renowned research institute.”
Bpifrance is the French national investment bank. It finances businesses – at every stage of their development – through loans, guarantees, equity investments and export insurances. Bpifrance also provides extra financial services, such as training and consultancy to help entrepreneurs meet their challenges.
About Urania Therapeutics
Urania Therapeutics is a privately held French biopharmaceutical company specializing in the identification and development of ‘readthrough’ compounds following a structure-based-drug design approach (SBDD). These compounds induce the overcoming of premature stop codons during protein synthesis to allow the production of missing full-length protein.
In restoring production of functional protein by targeting the decoding centre of the human ribosome, the aim is to provide new therapeutic options for a vast array of monogenic diseases, such as Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) and Cystic Fibrosis (CF), as well as certain cancer subtypes caused by nonsense mutations, a new illustration of precision medicine.
Urania Therapeutics’ approach relies on the work and expertise of its scientific founders, world-leading ribosome structure experts Marat Yusupov and Gulnara Yusupova, CNRS research directors at IGBMC (Institute of Genetics and Molecular and Cellular Biology). Headquartered in Strasbourg (France), the company was created in 2015.