Venture firms bet $41M more on P&G spinout developing oral anemia drug

Akebia Therapeutics might be a bit behind in the race to develop a safer, oral drug for anemia, but it’s just gotten a big vote of confidence from investors in the form of a $41 million Series C. Novartis Venture Fund, Kearny Venture Partners, Venture Investors LLC, Athenian Venture Partners, Triathlon Medical Ventures, AgeChem Venture […]


Vascular disease biopharma Aerpio nabs $27M for trials of diabetic macular edema drug

A biopharmaceutical company that spun out of Cincinnati-based Akebia Therapeutics just eight months ago has raised $27 million to support development and clinical trials of its drug for diabetic macular edema. Novartis BioVentures led Aerpio Therapeutics’ series A, which also saw participation from Venture Investors LLC, Triathlon Medical Ventures, Kearny Venture Partners, Athenian Venture Partners […]


Oral anemia drug meets primary endpoints in phase 2 trial

A once-daily oral anemia drug from Akebia Therapeutics met its primary endpoint in a phase 2a trial of chronic kidney disease patients. The successful 42-day trial of the drug, now called AKB-6548, sets the stage for a longer 2b trial that would follow patients for six months, said Bill Daly, Akebia’s senior vice president of […]


Akebia spins off new company to develop diabetic eye disease drug

Akebia Therapeutics has spun off a new company, the similarly named Aerpio Therapeutics, to develop drugs for diabetic macular edema and inflammatory bowel disease. Akebia will continue developing its oral anemia drug candidate, according to a statement from the Cincinnati-area company. The new company is looking to raise a series A round of financing this […]


Beyond EPO injections: Anemia treatment that comes in a pill

The pharmaceutical company Affymax just got $10 million for moving forward with an anemia treatment that would require one injection a month as opposed to as many as several shots a week. Imagine the opportunity if someone can take a similar anemia treatment and let patients swallow it? Startups and well-established drugmakers are competing to […]


Akebia begins Phase 2a trial of oral anemia drug

Akebia Therapeutics Inc. has begun a Phase 2a clinical trial of its orally administered anemia drug. The company recently completed a Phase 1b trial of the drug, called AKB-6548, that showed an increase in erythropoietin, immature red blood cells and hemoglobin with “no significant adverse events,” according to a statement from the Cincinnati-area drug developer. […]


Akebia Therapeutics aims at needs of chronic anemia patients

Being first isn’t the only goal in the drug-development business. Sometimes, an unmet patient need is so great, companies that are second or third to market stand a good chance of success. That’s what Akebia Therapeutics Inc. near Cincinnati is hoping for as it prepares to do Phase 2 clinical trials of its drug to […]


Akebia Therapeutics gets thumbs up from clinical trial, investors

Updated 6:47 p.m. Small molecule discovery and development company Akebia Therapeutics Inc. reported positive results from a second Phase 1 clinical trial of its anemia drug, as well as the second closing of a $16 million financing round announced almost a year ago, boosting the round to $17 million. Startup Akebia is racing to the […]


Queen City Angels defy bad economy, invest in 8 health care companies

Queen City Angels invested in seven life sciences companies and one health information technology company last year, according to its 2009 annual operating report (pdf). The group of accredited investors finished the year with 12 investments, which included three IT companies and one company specializing in advanced materials. In addition, the angel group created a […]