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Côte d’Azur BioTech : InnoSkel Launches with €20 Million Series A Financing

InnoSkel, based in Nice Côte d’Azur and Sophia Antipolis,  is a newly launched platform biotechnology company pioneering gene therapies for rare skeletal disease.

The company announced that it has raised €20 million in a Series A financing round.

The fundraise was co-led by Jeito Capital and Vida Ventures, with additional support from Région Sud Investissement and The Turenne Group. Proceeds from the financing will be used to advance the company’s lead program clinical stage operations. InnoSkel was founded by Elvire Gouze, PhD, a scientific expert in skeletal disorders with over 20 years working in molecular pharmacology.

InnoSkel is developing treatment options for a group of rare skeletal disorders collectively known as type 2 collagenopathies that affect the structure of the body’s connective tissues (collagen). InnoSkel’s lead asset, and initial point of focus, is a gene therapy for spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia congenita (SEDc), a type 2 collagenopathy that develops in infancy and affects approximately 1 in 100,000 individuals worldwide . SEDc is the second leading cause of dwarfism worldwide and is characterized by very short stature, severe skeletal and joint malformations, and abnormalities affecting the eyes and ears. The asset has demonstrated compelling efficacy in proof-of-concept studies conducted at the Institut de Biologie Valrose (iBV) of the University Cote d’Azur, Nice, France.

Elvire Gouze, Founder and CEO of InnoSkel, said: “Innoskel is committed to developing transformative therapies for patients with skeletal dysplasia who currently have no viable treatment options and experience poor quality of life as a result. We are extremely excited to progress our novel gene therapy for SEDc, as well as our broader therapy platform, and will be working closely with the patient community as we move forwards.
We are delighted to officially launch with the backing of top tier international healthcare investors Jeito Capital and Vida Ventures, which indicates the strength of Innoskel’s platform. I would also like to personally recognize the iBV, the University Cote d’Azur in Nice, as well as Inserm Transfert, for supporting InnoSkel in its mission and making its creation possible.”

In addition to pre-clinical research, the funds will allow InnoSkel to further develop its broader asset pipeline targeting novel therapies for a range of rare skeletal disorders where there is severe unmet medical need. There are more than 350 of these disorders. InnoSkel also intends to use the funds to expand its management and laboratory teams internationally.

Rafaèle Tordjman, Founder and CEO at Jeito, said: “Our investment in InnoSkel aligns with Jeito’s mission of supporting companies with high-quality science, potential for acceleration, and tackling real unmet needs. We are confident that Innoskel CEO Elvire Gouze will lead the company from strength to strength as it progresses towards clinical stage.”

Rajul Jain, MD, Director of Vida Ventures, said: “We share InnoSkel’s commitment to advancing novel therapies that will translate into effective treatments for patients in areas of unmet medical need. Dr. Gouze and her outstanding team have a deep understanding of the development of treatments for patients with rare skeletal disorders, and we are delighted to support them as they advance this important technology into the clinic.”

   

About Dr. Elvire Gouze, CEO and Founder of InnoSkel

InnoSkel is led by Elvire Gouze, an experienced scientist, serial entrepreneur and expert in skeletal disorders. She holds a PhD in Molecular Pharmacology and has over 20 years of experience in bone and cartilage diseases. Dr. Gouze has a proven track record of progressing the development of an innovative therapeutic pipeline, as seen with her first venture TherAchon, a biotech company focusing on achondroplasia, a rare bone disease, which was acquired at Phase 1 stage for $810m by Pfizer in mid-2019. From 2016, Dr. Gouze was team leader at the Institute de Biologie Valrose in Nice where her team focused on the development of innovative biotherapies for skeletal dysplasia.

About InnoSkel

InnoSkel is a pioneering platform biotechnology company developing therapies for rare skeletal diseases. InnoSkel is developing treatment options for a group of rare skeletal disorders collectively known as type 2 collagenopathies, the most severe of which is Spondyloepiphyseal Dysplasia congenita (SEDc), the second leading cause of dwarfism worldwide. InnoSkel’s lead gene therapy asset for SEDc has demonstrated good efficacy in proof-of-concept studies. The company’s fundamental mission is to improve the lives of patients living with skeletal dysplasia and to answer their unmet needs, keeping their voices at the heart of all they do. InnoSkel is a spin-out of the Institut de Biologie Valrose at Inserm, the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research, and is based in Nice, France.

For more information, visit www.innoskel.com.

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