Roslyn, NY, December 23, 2015 – Accelerate Long Island and the Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund (LIETF) have announced an investment of $100,000 in DepYmed, Inc. DepYmed is a Long Island-based cancer therapeutic development company created by a joint venture of Ohr Pharmaceutical, Inc. and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. DepYmed’s lead compound is currently in clinical development as a therapeutic candidate for HER2-positive breast cancer.
Accelerate Long Island provided a $50,000 grant to DepYmed from its $500,000 Seed Fund, which was established by a grant from New York State Empire State Development awarded by the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council. The Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund (LIETF) through Jove Equity Partners also invested $50,000 in DepYmed, for a total investment of $100,000. DepYmed is the 10th and final deal of the first Accelerate Long Island Seed Fund. DepYmed’s lead compound in development is MSI-1436 (Trodusquemine), a potent inhibitor of the enzyme PTP1B (protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B).
The CEO of DepYmed is Andreas Grill. Mr. Grill is a veteran in drug product development with over two decades of experience. Prior to joining DepYmed, Mr. Grill founded Advanced Pharmaceutical Strategies, LLC, a drug product development consulting firm working with a number companies within the cancer therapeutic area. In addition, he is the former Executive Director of Pharmaceutical Research & Development at Forest Research Institute, a subsidiary of Forest Laboratories, Inc., now known as Allergan. Mr. Grill also serves on multiple Scientific Advisory Boards and Board of Directors for both SUNY Stony Brook and Farmingdale College. Mr. Grill is a "BioEntrepreneur in Residence" at the Center for Biotechnology, a New York State Center for Advanced Technology located on the Stony Brook University campus.
“DepYmed is currently exploring new innovative methods of treating cancers with our novel PTP1B inhibitor technology. There remains a desperate need for cancer patients to receive effective treatments. The funding provided by Accelerate Long Island and LIETF provides additional support to DepYmed to achieve our goals for these patients,” explains Andreas Grill, President and CEO of DepYmed, Inc.
“Long Island’s talented and educated workforce will be a great resource for DepYmed, as the company develops the next generation of PTP1B inhibitors to treat breast cancer,” said Howard Zemsky, President, CEO & Commissioner of Empire State Development. “Accelerate Long Island has done great work creating an entrepreneurial ecosystem, where ideas can flourish and Long Island’s economy can continue to thrive in the 21st Century.”
“We’re pleased that Professor Tonks’ discoveries are being developed for the benefit of patients and to have partnerships on Long Island in taking this forward,” said Teri Willey, Vice President of Business Development and Technology Transfer at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.
DepYmed will use the grant and investment funds to support operations and establish an office and laboratory at the Broad Hollow Bioscience Park.
A Phase 1 clinical study evaluating the safety of MSI-1436 in breast cancer will be conducted in collaboration with the North Shore-LIJ Cancer Institute at Monter Cancer Center in Lake Success. “This would be the first clinical study born from the new strategic affiliation signed earlier this year by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and the North Shore-LIJ Health System,” said George Raptis, MD, acting executive director of the North Shore-LIJ Cancer Institute. “Developed by physician scientists of DepYmed, North Shore-LIJ and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, the clinical trial would be an exciting opportunity to bring early-phase research to breast cancer patients.”
DepYmed joins nine other high-tech startup companies in the Accelerate Long Island Seed Fund/LIETF portfolio. Accelerate Long Island’s portfolio, funded through the grant from Empire State Development awarded as part of Round 1 of the LIREDC, includes a total of nine biotech companies and one energy company.
“I am pleased to announce the Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund’s tenth investment to help launch high-tech companies based on Long Island research. Two years ago, we started the funds with the initial goal of helping to get 10 research-based companies started here on Long Island – and today we are pleased to announce that we have met that goal. DepYmed, which is developing breast cancer therapeutics with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, rounds out the Accelerate Long Island Seed Fund and Long Island Emerging Technologies portfolio of companies that are commercializing innovations at our research institutions,” said David Calone, President of Jove Equity Partners.
“DepYmed, a Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory spin-out led by former Forest Laboratories Executive Andreas Grill, completes the Accelerate Long Island Seed Fund’s portfolio of ten high-technology startup companies based on research developed at Long Island’s world-class institutions. I look forward to the success of DepYmed and the other nine companies in the Accelerate Long Island portfolio and thank Empire State Development and the Long Island Emerging Technologies Fund for their support,” said Mark Lesko, Executive Director of Accelerate Long Island.
“DepYmed’s pipeline of allosteric PTP1B enzyme inhibitors affords the promise of novel therapies in multiple therapeutic settings,” said Sam Backenroth, DepYmed Director and CFO of Ohr Pharmaceutical, Inc. “We are pleased to see DepYmed has been recognized by ALI and the LIETF for its potential significant contribution to the treatment of cancer."
"Andreas has been an active leader within the region's bioscience community, and has mentored faculty, postdocs and students through various Center for Biotechnology Programs. As a BioEntrepreneur in Residence he has evaluated more than a dozen business and technology development opportunities across Stony Brook University, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, and Brookhaven National Laboratory ultimately settling on the DepYmed opportunity as the best fit with his interests. It is a great outcome for the region, and we look forward to working with Andreas to support the growth of DepYmed," said Diane Fabel, Director of Operations for the Center for Biotechnology and Long Island Bioscience Hub.
About Accelerate Long Island
Accelerate Long Island and the LIETF’s other nine investments include Codagenix, Envisagenics, Goddard Labs, PolyNova, Right Dose, Sulfcrete, Symbiotic Health, SynchroPET and Traverse Biosciences. Accelerate Long Island is a unique collaboration among the region’s world-class research institutions and business community, dedicated to commercializing research and creating an entrepreneurial ecosystem. Accelerate Long Island’s Board includes the Presidents of Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Hofstra University, North Shore-LIJ Health System, Stony Brook University, and private sector partners include the Long Island Association, Topspin Partners, Jove Equity Partners, Ernst & Young, Farrell Fritz, and the Rauch Foundation. For more information, visit www.accelerateli.org. Twitter: @AccelerateLI.
About DepYmed, Inc.
DepYmed, Inc., is a Long Island, New York based cancer therapeutic development company created by a joint venture of Ohr Pharmaceutical, Inc. (NasdaqCM:OHRP) and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. DepYmed’s lead compound in development is MSI-1436C (Trodusquemine), a potent inhibitor of the enzyme PTP1B (protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B) and is currently in clinical development as a therapeutic candidate for HER2-positive breast cancer. DepYmed continues to develop the next generation of more potent PTP1B inhibitors in partnership with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. DepYmed continues to explore additional indications that may benefit from using PTP1B inhibitors as therapeutic agents. For more information, visit www.depymedinc.com.
About Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Celebrating its 125th anniversary in 2015, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory has shaped contemporary biomedical research and education with programs in cancer, neuroscience, plant biology and quantitative biology. Home to eight Nobel Prize winners, the private, not-for-profit Laboratory is more than 600 researchers and technicians strong. The Meetings & Courses Program hosts more than 12,000 scientists from around the world each year on its campuses in Long Island and in Suzhou, China. The Laboratory’s education arm also includes an academic publishing house, a graduate school and programs for middle and high school students and teachers. For more information, visit www.cshl.edu.
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