AMSTERDAM, Dec. 2, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Regenesance BV, an Amsterdam-based specialty pharma focusing on developing drugs to treat acute and chronic nerve disorders, announces the closure of its first seed stage financing round. The investment was made by Life Sciences Fund Amsterdam, an independent venture capital fund established in 2009 to finance biomedical companies in the greater Amsterdam region.
Regenesance was established in November 2009 as a spin-out of the Academic Medical Center Amsterdam (AMC Amsterdam). The Company was founded on scientific work from AMC researcher Prof. Frank Baas. He found that an innate part of the immune system ("complement") is activated during nerve degeneration. Research from his lab suggests that by reducing complement activation it may be possible to treat many diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS), myasthenia gravis (MG), and traumatic brain injury (TBI).
MS is a chronic autoimmune disease that attacks the body's central nervous system. There is no cure. Damaged nerves cannot communicate, leading to severe physical and cognitive disabilities. In The Netherlands, about 16,000 people have the disease with about 3 million afflicted worldwide. Prof. Baas identified compounds that decrease complement activity and significantly reduce disease severity in a research model of MS. The Company will use funding to advance a lead compound into a pre-clinical testing program required by national regulatory authorities for drug approval. If successful, it would be as a major step toward conducting a future MS clinical trial with a pharma partner.
The founders of Regenesance are an international team with extensive experience in the management of a life science company. Dr. Frank Baas is a co-founder of the Company as well as a Professor of Neurogenetics, Head of the Neurogenetics Laboratory and Genome Analysis facility at AMC. Co-founders Dr. Kee