Cystic Fibrosis Drug Developer N30 Pharmaceuticals Raises $30M

Xconomy Boulder/Denver — 

N30 Pharmaceuticals, a Boulder-based pharmaceutical company developing drugs for cystic fibrosis, announced yesterday it has raised a $30 million mezzanine financing round. N30 Pharma will use the funds to continue clinical trials for N91115, for which it recently completed a Phase 1 dose-escalation trial.

N30 Pharma’s new investors include Wellington Management, RA Capital Management, Rock Springs Capital Management, and Sabby Management, along with certain clients of Jennison Associates. Deerfield Management, an existing investor, also participated.

The company said the round was oversubscribed and brings the total amount the company has raised to $115 million since its 2007 founding.

In addition to funding the drug trial, the round could allow N30 Pharmaceuticals to test the market, said Janice Troha, executive vice president of product development and regulatory affairs.

“The round positions us for an IPO relatively soon, possibly within the next 12 months depending on market conditions,” Troha said in an e-mail.

Cystic fibrosis affects 30,000 people in the U.S. and 70,000 people worldwide. About 90 percent of people with the condition have mutations that impair the hydration of their lungs and other organs. N30 Pharma believes N91115 could increase the ability of a defective protein to transport water to those organs, especially the lungs.

The dose-escalation trial gave the drug to healthy volunteers, and now it is being tested on cystic fibrosis patients with the F508del-CFTR mutation that affects the protein.

N30 Pharma isn’t the only company developing drugs to treat that mutation. Cambridge, MA-based Vertex Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: VRTX) has released ivacaftor (Kalydeco), however Vertex has found that Kalydeco does not work for patients with two copies of the F508del mutation. Vertex is developing other drugs that treat that patient population.

N30 Pharma has three other cystic fibrosis drugs in preclinical development, but the company is prioritizing work on N91115 through its clinical proof of concept stage, Troha said.