Ceregene, Inc. is a private, San Diego-based biotechnology company focused on the treatment of major neurodegenerative disorders using the delivery of nervous system growth factors. Our clinical programs include CERE-110, an AAV2 based vector expressing nerve growth factor, which is now in Phase 2 studies for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, and CERE-120, which completed a Phase 2 clinical trial in Parkinson’s disease and is currently being tested in a new Phase 1/2 study. CERE-135 and CERE-140 are in preclinical development for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease) and ocular diseases, respectively.
Ceregene was launched in January 2001, and our investors include Alta Partners, MPM Capital, Investor Growth Capital, Hamilton BioVentures, and BioSante Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: BPAX), which acquired its position following its merger with Cell Genesys, Inc. in October, 2009, as well as California Technology Partners. Ceregene has raised a total of approximately $120 million in both equity and non-dilutive financing. Our initial financing was for $10.5 million, followed by our first venture (Series B) round of $32 million in 2004 co-led by Alta Partners and MPM Capital. Our Series C financing in 2007 for $28.1 million was led by Investor Growth Capital, and our Series D financing that closed in November, 2010 was for $11.5 million and co-led by Hamilton BioVentures and Alta Partners, with participation from MPM Capital and Investor Growth Capital. The company has a highly motivated and efficient team of about 20 employees led by a seasoned management team and board of directors, as well as a scientific advisory board comprised of leaders in their fields.
Neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, ALS and Huntington’s disease are the result of specific cell loss in the central nervous system. Substantial scientific evidence from numerous international laboratories, as well as within our own labs, has shown that neurotrophic growth factors can have remarkable effects in numerous models of neurodegenerative diseases. However, the inability to accurately and effectively target their delivery has limited their utility in the clinic. Our proprietary AAV-based gene delivery approach solves this problem, providing targeted delivery of the neurotrophic factors in a sustained fashion for the lifetime of the patient following a single dosing procedure. The proprietary use of neurotrophic factor genes, delivered by gene therapy, to treat neurodegenerative diseases provides the company with a broad platform of therapeutic opportunities.