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Venture Capital News: Sentien Biotechnologies Grabs Series A

MEDFORD, MA, Regenerative medicine company developing cell based therapies for acute organ failure, has announced a Series A investment by Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund.
Sentien Biotechnologies, Inc., a regenerative medicine company developing cell based therapies for acute organ failure, is pleased to announce a Series A investment by Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund USA, Inc. ('BIVF') and Portage Biotech Inc. (Canadian Securities Exchange: PBT.U, OTC Markets : PTGEF). Sentien will use the proceeds of its Series A round to fund its activities through a planned Phase I study of their lead product, the Sentinel™, a cell-containing dialysis device for the treatment of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI).
Dr. Martin Heidecker, Managing Director at BIVF, and Dr. Greg Bailey, Chairman of Portage, will be joining Sentien's Board of Directors.
Dr. Heidecker commented, 'Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund is excited to make this investment in Sentien, who we believe has the potential to change the regenerative medicine space. In preclinical models, their lead product has shown strong potential to have a meaningful clinical impact in AKI, a significant unmet medical need, as well as other organ failure indications.'
Dr. Bailey added, 'Sentien has developed a novel way to administer the therapeutic factors produced by their cell therapy product, and we were very impressed by their preclinical data across several indications. This investment is a good adjunct to our portfolio of products that can reach inflection points in under 2 years.'
Brian Miller, CEO of Sentien, said, 'We are thrilled to have BIVF and Portage participate in our Series A financing, and to have Dr. Heidecker and Dr. Bailey join our Board of Directors. With this financing, we are in excellent position to advance our lead product into the clinic and to continue development of the technology in other indications.'
About Sentien:
Sentien is a private, preclinical stage regenerative medicine company that is developing cell based therapies for critical care. Their lead product is being developed to treat severe Acute Kidney Injury, (AKI), the sudden loss of kidney function that can occur after cardiac surgery. Sentien has received numerous SBIR awards from the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), including a $3M Phase IIB grant to advance the technology into a Phase I clinical trial.
About Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund:
Created in 2010, the Boehringer Ingelheim Venture Fund GmbH (BIVF) invests in ground breaking therapeutics-focused biotechnology companies to drive innovation in biomedical research. BIVF is searching for significant enhancements in patient care through pioneering science and its clinical translation by building long-term relationships with scientists and entrepreneurs. BIVF's focus is to target unprecedented therapeutic concepts addressing high medical needs in immuno-oncology, in regenerative medicine or gene therapy. These may include novel platform technologies to address so far undrugable targets, new generation vaccines and/or new biological entities, such as oncolytic virotherapy.
BIVF takes an active role with its portfolio companies - delivering significant added value through its own extensive drug discovery, scientific and managerial expertise. The BIVF has €100 million under management and supervises currently a portfolio of 15 active companies.
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About Portage:
Portage is engaged in researching and developing pharmaceutical and biotech products through to clinical 'proof of concept' with an initial focus on unmet clinical needs. Following proof of concept, Portage will look to sell or license the products to large pharmaceutical companies for further development and commercialization.
Portage is seeking discovery and co-development partners in areas such as cancer, infectious disease, neurology and psychiatry developing novel targeted therapies, stem cell therapy and even older marketed products that have been found to have novel patentable characteristics that bring new value to patients.
Portage seeks to work with a wide range of partners, in all phases of development through in-licensing or other types of alliances. The collaboration may include direct funding or investing human capital from our extensive pool of talented scientists and physicians. Specifically Portage will invest sweat equity as well as, or instead of, capital. This internal pool of drug developers, financiers, scientists and physicians will provide unique value-add for our partners including but not limited to mitigating risks, clinical trial design, regulatory expertise and maximizing the rewards.
Portage has two operating subsidiaries - Portage Pharmaceuticals Limited ('PPL') which is wholly owned by Portage and Biohaven Pharmaceutical Holding Company Limited ('Biohaven') in which Portage holds 54% equity along with this new investment in Sentien.
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