Tolera Therapeutics closes Series A financing, raises $8 million to begin antibody
manufacturing and working with FDA on clinical trials.
June 16, 2008- Tolera Therapeutics Inc., a newly formed biotechnology company focusing on the
development of immunotherapeutics directed at the transplantation, oncology and
autoimmune disease markets, announced today that it has closed its Series A financing. This
most recent raise brings the total company financing to over $8 million since
the company was spun out of Cleveland Clinic Innovations in January, 2007. The financing syndicate was led by Triathlon
Medical Ventures of Cincinnati, Ohio, and included the Southwest Michigan First
Life Science Fund of Kalamazoo, Michigan and Hopen Therapeutics, Inc. of Grand
"This funding affords us the
opportunity to move quickly in advancing our novel therapeutic technologies" said
CEO John Puisis "And we are eager to bring these technologies
forward on behalf of patients and clinicians seeking next generation approaches
to immune modulation".
of Triathlon Medical Ventures, who will join the Board of Directors of the
company added: "We are delighted to lead
this first institutional funding round for Tolera, a company with a promising
technology platform and a near term product with human data evidencing key
advantages in transplantation. We look forward to working with our fellow
investors to support the management team in realizing the value of the
company’s most promising opportunities".
CEO Puisis continued, "We are very
pleased to have the support of the Midwest venture community. There are tremendous life science resources
in the Midwest and this syndicate, coming together in support of our
technology, is indicative of the growing stature of the region for biotech
innovation and investment opportunities".
About Tolera Therapeutics: Building upon
research done at the University of Kentucky and the Cleveland Clinic, Tolera Therapeutics is developing and
commercializing therapies for the immune suppression / modulation market with
the goal of addressing unmet medical needs with safer, more targeted solutions
to reduce the risk of serious and toxic side effects. The company is focusing first on
commercializing a therapeutic monoclonal antibody for the transplantation and
oncology markets, while researching and developing related therapies for those
suffering from autoimmune diseases such as diabetes (Type 1). The company owns an exclusive, worldwide
license to its antibody technology, including chimeric and humanized clones,
which has already undergone extensive research, development and human studies. Additional information concerning the company
and its technology can be found on its website www.tolera.com.
About Triathlon Medical
Triathlon Medical Ventures is a Midwest-based venture capital firm that invests
exclusively in the life sciences. Investing its first fund of $105 million, the
venture firm provides equity capital to early and expansion stage companies
with proprietary biomedical technology platforms or products addressing
significant human healthcare needs. Investments are geographically focused on
early stage opportunities in the Midwest but include later stage companies
nationwide. Triathlon Medical Ventures is headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio,
with offices and partners in Indianapolis, Indiana; Louisville, Kentucky; and
St. Louis, Missouri. To learn more about
Triathlon Medical Ventures, go to www.tmvp.com.
About Southwest Michigan First: The Southwest Michigan First Life
Science Fund is a $50 million limited partnership venture fund interested in
early stage life science opportunities in southwest Michigan that have
demonstrably viable technologies and are committed to establishing a presence
in the Kalamazoo region. The fund's
primary goal is to spur economic development and retain intellectual capital
within the area. More information about the Southwest
Michigan First Life Science Fund can be found at www.southwestmichiganfirst.com/wmlifesciencecompanies.cfm.
About Hopen Therapeutics: Hopen
Therapeutics is a private investment and management firm focused on helping
early- to mid-stage life science developments achieve commercial success
located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The organization focuses on identifying
promising healthcare innovations, whether the concept is a drug, medical device
or other healthcare product, and accelerating time to market. Hopen Therapeutics considers investments
without regard to specific disease indication, market size, or geographic
area. For additional information, go to www.hopentherapeutics.com.