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23 July, 2012 - 11:55 By Tony Quested

Funxional cashes in on Boehringer deal

Quality control in a research laboratory at Boehringer Ingelheim. Copyright: Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH

A Cambridge UK anti-inflammatory drug has been acquired by German pharma giant Boehringer Ingelheim for an undisclosed sum, allowing some of the early investors to partially exit the University spin-out.

Boehringer is acquiring the global rights to Funxional Therapeutics' FX125L technology – a compound and somatotaxin programme. FX125L is a small molecule to treat a broad range of inflammatory diseases and was recently studied in a Phase 2 clinical trial in patients after successful Phase 1 studies in the US.

Boehringer will be responsible for all further research, development and commercialisation of FX125L, which it believes could lead to development of a potential new therapy to patients suffering from asthma and COPD, for example.

David Grainger, founder and CSO of Funxional Therapeutics said: “We are very pleased that the future development of FX125L and the somatotaxin programme will be now driven forward by Boehringer Ingelheim. They are a very impressive organisation and their people have the necessary knowledge, skills and experience to successfully develop FX125L.”

Funxional was founded by David Grainger in 2005 based on intellectual property developed by Dr Grainger and his colleagues at Cambridge University, in collaboration with Ipsen, a global specialty-driven pharmaceutical company targeting debilitating diseases in neurology, endocrinology, uro-oncology and haemophilia.

Index Ventures and Novo A/S provided first round funding to initiate research and development activities. Further funding was led by Ventech. the deal has given the trio a partial exit from the privately held Cambridge business.

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Quality control in a research laboratory at Boehringer Ingelheim. Copyright: Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH

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