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Second tranche for Aileron brings total round to $42 million
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—Aileron Therapeutics Inc. recently secured the second tranche in its Series D financing, bringing the total round to $42 million.
The payment of the second tranche was based on the successful progression through preclinical studies of Aileron's lead stapled peptide drug, ALRN-5281. Proceeds from this tranche will be directed to the clinical development of ALRN-5281 in patients with orphan endocrine disorders early this year. Once it is set into motion, the ALRN-5281 clinical trial will mark the first-ever stapled peptide human clinical trial.
Current investors Apple Tree Partners, Excel Venture Management, Lilly Ventures, Novartis Venture Funds, Roche Venture Fund and SR One participated in the round.
"These proceeds will allow us to advance ALRN-5281 through Phase I development and continue to develop our pipeline of stapled peptide drugs," said Joseph A. Yanchik III, president and chief executive officer of Aileron Therapeutics. "This is a critical next step for our company, our collaborators and the emerging stapled peptide field. We appreciate the continued support of our investors and look forward to sharing more details around our orphan endocrine disorders program when we initiate the Phase I study in the coming months."
ALRN-5281 was discovered and developed through Aileron's stapled peptide technology platform, an approach that locks peptides into their biologically active shape "that provides first-in-class pharmacokinetic profiles allowing effective delivery of the peptide and pharmacological profiles that resemble the natural proteins." In preclinical studies, ALRN-5281 reportedly has demonstrated properties of a stable, long-acting hormone that may overcome the pharmacokinetic and dosing challenges that have limited the use and safety of traditional peptide hormones.
Aileron is also advancing stapled peptide drug candidates in collaboration with Roche, including a highly potent and specific dual inhibitor of MDM2 and MDMX for p53-dependent cancers. Preclinical data from this second program were recently presented at the 2012 EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics.