Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Clearside Biomedical set to close on $4M investment

From Frank Vinluan, MedCityNews

CED Member and ophthalmic treatments company Clearside Biomedical is nearly finished raising its $4 million first round of financing.

The Georgia company, which has its research and development operations in Durham, North Carolina, launched its series A round in January with an initial investment from Hatteras Venture Partners. The latest securities filings show that Clearside Biomedical has raised $3.2 million in the round. This announcement comes just days after Clearside Biomedical presented at the CED Life Science Conference 2012.

The Hatteras investment came from its seed-stage fund called Hatteras Discovery. That fund targets early stage companies facing the so-called financing “valley of death.” The funding is intended to continue support of Clearside’s R&D and also to allow the company to start clinical testing.

Clearside is developing a novel drug-delivery platform for the eyes. Right now, doctors can deliver drugs to the eye by means of what’s called in intravitreal injection. But Clearside’s microneedle technology aims to deliver drugs and proteins to the hard-to-reach parts of the eye such as the retina, areas that can’t be reached by existing methods. Clearside says its technology offers a more targeted approach to eye drug delivery.

Clearside is also developing a drug candidate, CLS1001, that could be delivered with the company’s new technology. CLS1001 is intended to be a treatment for macular edema and retinal vein occlusion. Both conditions, which are commonly associated with diabetes, can lead to blindness.

Clearside’s technology was developed jointly by researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology and the Emory University School of Medicine.