SV Health Investors Joins Prilenia Series B as the Company Prepares for ALS and HD Data Readouts in the Next 12 Months

in Portfolio News

-- Second closing brings total capital invested in Prilenia since its founding to $144M --

-- Houman Ashrafian, Managing Partner at SV Health Investors, to join Prilenia’s Board of Directors --

-- Proceeds to support advancing the Company’s Huntington’s Disease (HD) and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) programs in preparation for upcoming milestones and pre-commercialization efforts --

April 12, 2022 07:00 AM Eastern Daylight Time

NAARDEN, Netherlands--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Prilenia Therapeutics B.V., a clinical stage biotechnology company focused on the urgent mission to develop novel therapeutics to slow the progression of neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental disorders, today announced that it has raised an additional $10 million, bolstering the Series B financing round and bringing total capital raised to date to $144 million.

The second closing includes new investor, SV Health Investors, a leading transatlantic venture capital and growth equity firm, with offices in Boston and London, committed to investing in tomorrow’s healthcare breakthroughs. SV joins Prilenia’s initial Series B investors Sands Capital, Forbion, Morningside, Amplitude Ventures, as well as Sectoral Asset Management, Talisman and the ALS Investment Fund. Proceeds from the financing will allow Prilenia to continue the strong momentum of its lead drug candidate, pridopidine, for patients with Huntington’s Disease (HD) and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) through 2024. Data readouts for both of Prilenia’s clinical trials are expected in the next 12 months.

In conjunction with the financing, Houman Ashrafian, Managing Partner at SV Health Investors, co-lead of SV’s Biotech franchise, will join the Company’s Board of Directors. The SV Biotech funds invest in companies built on novel science, seeking breakthroughs that address critical unmet medical needs with the potential to change the practice of medicine. Houman has significant experience in the biotech industry and a long history of building high value, successful new companies and bringing transformational drugs from discovery to market.

“Prilenia’s novel Sigma-1 Receptor agonist approach represents a promising therapeutic advancement for patients with HD and ALS – two devastating neurodegenerative diseases with an unmet need for treatment,” said Houman Ashrafian. “There is great potential behind pridopidine, and SV is looking forward to supporting the Company alongside the strong leadership track record of Dr. Michael Hayden and the Prilenia team.”

“Since Prilenia's founding, our commitment to patients has been the driving force behind all of our efforts, and these additional funds further support our mission of providing hope to patients and families,” said Dr. Michael R. Hayden, CEO and Founder of Prilenia. “We are passionate in our belief that innovative drug development can have a transformative impact on patients, and we are delighted to welcome SV and to have Houman join our board as we work with urgency to develop potentially life-changing therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases.”

This second closing further strengthens Prilenia’s efforts and is backed by recent milestones, including the completion of patient enrollment in the Pridopidine Outcome On Function in Huntington’s Disease (PROOF-HD) Global Phase 3 Clinical Trial and the HEALEY ALS Platform Trial. In addition, Prilenia recently received Fast Track designation for pridopidine for the treatment of HD. This allows for more frequent communications with the FDA and may also qualify for accelerated approval and priority review of new drug applications. Upcoming milestones for the Company include sharing data from the HEALEY ALS Platform Trial in late 2022 and PROOF-HD top-line results in early 2023.

Houman Ashrafian

Houman Ashrafian joins the Prilenia team with decades of experience advancing and growing biotechnology companies. Just since 2016, Houman has founded six companies; Sitryx, Enara Bio, TRexBio, Alchemab, Catamaran Bio and Mestag and serves on the board of four of these companies. Previously, Houman co-founded the services company Cardiac Report in 2003, as well as Heart Metabolics in 2008. Heart Metabolics successfully repositioned perhexiline, as a treatment for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and heart failure. Perhexiline is now in advanced clinical trials and has orphan drug designation. Outside of SV, following completion of his cardiology training, Houman was appointed as an Honorary Consultant Cardiologist in 2011 at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford. He is Visiting Professor and Head of Experimental Therapeutics at the University of Oxford. Additionally, Houman is co-founder and Chairman of Weatherden, a boutique clinical development company.

About Prilenia

Prilenia is a clinical stage biotech startup founded in 2018 focused on the urgent mission to develop novel therapeutics to slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases and neurodevelopmental disorders. Prilenia is backed by a group of well-respected investors including: Forbion, Morningside, Sands Capital, SV Health Investors, Sectoral Asset Management, Talisman, Amplitude Ventures and the ALS Investment Fund. The Company is based in Naarden, the Netherlands, Herzliya, Israel and Boston, MA in the U.S.

For more information visit and follow us on Twitter @prileniaTx.

About SV Health Investors

SV Health Investors is a leading healthcare fund manager committed to investing in tomorrow’s healthcare breakthroughs. The SV family of funds invests across stages, geographic regions, and sectors, with expertise spanning biotechnology, dementia, healthcare growth, healthcare technology and public equities. With approximately $2.7 billion in assets under management and a truly transatlantic presence with offices in Boston and London, SV has built an extensive network of talented investment professionals and experienced industry veterans. Since its founding in 1993, SV has invested in more than 200 companies with more than 90 of these having achieved successful acquisitions or IPOs.

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Marin Bergman
Ten Bridge Communications

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