Savara Pharmaceuticals, an Austin, Texas, pharmaceutical company specializing in the treatment of life-threatening and rare respiratory diseases, recently announced that it has closed a $20 million Series C financing round, an essential step toward initiating a Phase 3 clinical trial evaluating AeroVanc (vancomycin hydrochloride inhalation powder), the first inhaled antibiotic being developed to address the growing problem of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) lung infection in people with cystic fibrosis (CF).
About Series C Financing
Series C funding is a financing mechanism provided by venture capital firms to companies that have shown maturity in the marketplace, meaning that the business has already proven to be viable and the investors are generally encouraged about its long-term odds of success.
AeroVanc, which is delivered directly into the patient’s lungs, allows the delivery of higher concentrations of the antibiotic vancomycin at the site of infection. The unique delivery system has already received Fast Track and Orphan Drug designations, as well as Qualified Infectious Disease Product (QIDP) status, by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
A Phase 2 clinical trial of AeroVanc showed the therapy offered clinical benefits, including a statistically significant reduction in MRSA density in sputum as compared to placebo, improvements in pulmonary function and respiratory symptoms, improvements in the time from infection to worsening of symptoms, and a reduction in the need for other antibiotics.
The Phase 3 trial of AeroVanc plans to enroll a larger patient group to test the treatment’s effectiveness, monitor side effects, and compare the drug to commonly used treatments, as well as collecting other information that would support its safe use in the general patient population.
“The new financing will help support the AeroVanc Phase 3 trial, and expanding our pipeline with other new drugs for serious and life-shortening rare respiratory diseases. Research shows that people with CF have a more rapid decline in lung function when infected with MRSA, as well as a reduction in overall survival. Our efforts will hopefully result in the FDA approval of the first inhaled antibiotic for use in MRSA infected people with CF,” concluded Rob Neville, chief executive officer of Savara Pharmaceuticals, in a company press release.