Esperion Therapeutics, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on oral low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) lowering therapies for hypercholesterolemia and other cardiometabolic disorders, has completed a $33 million preferred stock financing led by new investor Longitude Capital.
Existing investors Aisling Capital, Alta Partners, Domain Associates, Arboretum Ventures and Asset Management also participated in the financing. In connection with this financing, Longitude's Patrick Enright will join Esperion's board of directors.
"This financing allows us to continue to advance our novel lead product candidate, ETC-1002, for which we have 100% worldwide rights, in multiple ongoing and planned phase II clinical trials," said Tim Mayleben, president and CEO of Esperion.
ETC-1002 is a first-in-class, orally available, once-daily LDL-C lowering small molecule therapy designed to target known lipid and carbohydrate metabolic pathways to lower levels of LDL-C and to avoid many of the side effects associated with existing LDL-C lowering medications.Phase IIa clinical trials of ETC-1002 conducted so far have demonstrated significant average LDL-C reductions as high as 43% and reductions comparable to statins in levels of high sensitivity C-reactive protein, or hsCRP, a key marker of inflammation associated with cardiovascular disease.
ETC-1002 has been well tolerated and not associated with serious side effects, and there have been no serious adverse events in over 230 ETC-1002 treated patients. Unlike some therapies currently in development that, if approved, will require regular injections, ETC-1002 is an oral pill taken once daily, the same way traditional LDL-C lowering therapies have been administered.
"I am very pleased to become involved with Esperion," added Patrick Enright of Longitude. "I look forward to working with Roger, Tim and the entire Esperion team to realize the full potential of ETC-1002 in patients with elevated LDL-C who cannot tolerate statin therapy."