EnBiotix, Inc. a next-generation, engineered antibiotics company has been co-founded by Boston University and Apeiron Partners LLC. The technology is based on the work done by Prof. James J. Collins, a Professor of Biomedical Engineering and an Investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Dr. Collins is a Professor of Medicine and Co-Director of the Center for BioDynamics at Boston University and also a core founding faculty member of the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University.
The unmet medical need and the market opportunity in antibiotics are both very significant. Over the last 20 years, various bacteria have developed resistance to a wide variety of anti-bacterials, heralding the emergence of so-called “super-bugs”: organisms which can cause life-threatening infections and which are susceptible to very few or no effective agents to treat them.
This emerging resistance by a variety of bacteria and fungi has unfortunately been poorly addressed by the scientific and the bio-pharmaceutical industry, with very few new agents and almost no new drug classes having been developed in the last 30 years. Still, the global market for anti-bacterial agents is estimated at ~$30 billion and expected to grow ~6% annually over the next several years.
Through the application of novel synthetic biology, systems biology and network biology approaches to elucidating antibiotic action and bacterial defense mechanisms, Prof. Collins has discovered transformational antibacterial and antifungal platforms which EnBiotix will further develop and commercialize for the benefit of patients, their families, treating physicians and healthcare delivery systems worldwide.
EnBiotix is led by Jeffrey D. Wager, M.D., the founder of Apeiron. With over 20 years of senior operating experience in the life sciences, Dr. Wager was recruited to Boston in 1995 to help run Medical Science Partners, a Harvard sponsored venture capital fund focused on forming spin-outs from the Harvard medical system, including firms such as ICAgen, Inspire, Oravax (subsequently Acambis), ZYCOS, Inc., Diatide, deCODE, amongst others. In 2000 he formed Apeiron to focus on designing and executing corporate spin-outs, having successfully completed six to date (including Targacept, Inc. (NASD:TRGT) and Artisan Pharma, Inc.). Between 2003 – 2006 he advised on the establishment and investment of Z-Cube s.r.l., the €60 million corporate VC arm of the Zambon Group, a privately-held Italian pharmaceutical company. From 2006 – 2010 he formed and led Artisan Pharma, Inc. as its founding CEO, raising >$50 million, building the team and implementing a 750 patient, 17 country Phase 2b study leading to its acquisition by Asahi in 2011.
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