Forendo Pharma, a clinical stage drug development company focusing on novel treatments in women’s health, today announces that Sunstone Life Science Ventures has made a €5 million investment in Forendo. Sunstone joins the existing international investor syndicate comprising Novo Seeds, Karolinska Development, Innovestor, Novartis Venture Fund, M Ventures and Vesalius Biocapital III. Claus Andersson, General Partner from Sunstone, joins Forendo Pharma’s Board of Directors.
The new financing will enable Forendo Pharma to progress its lead endometriosis program, FOR-6219, an oral small molecule HSD17B1 enzyme inhibitor, into the next phase of clinical studies after the successful completion of its Phase 1a study earlier this year.
Endometriosis is a chronic condition that affects many women of reproductive age and causes repeated pain symptoms, infertility and impaired quality of life. Currently available treatments for endometriosis have limitations in efficacy and/or cause significant side effects, due to systemic estrogen depletion. Forendo’s novel HSD17B1 inhibitor is the first drug that aims for a local effect in endometriosis lesions without effecting systemic estrogen.
Risto Lammintausta, CEO of Forendo Pharma, said: ” We are very pleased to welcome Sunstone as a new investor and Claus to our Board of Directors. Forendo’s women’s health portfolio is starting to reveal the potential of the HSD17B enzyme family in medicine and receiving increased attention from the industry and investors alike. With our increased investor support, we are now in a strong position to progress and expand our clinical program with our lead molecule.”
Claus Andersson, General Partner from Sunstone, added: “Sunstone sees women’s health as an area of trending popularity with immense need for investment. Endometriosis is a perfect example, as approximately 8% of all pre-menopausal women are affected, suffering moderate to severe pain, infertility and impaired quality of life. We are very pleased to make this first investment under our new Fund IV, which earlier this year had its first closing at €80 million, and with a target of €150 million at final closing.”