Perosphere launches with Brown, Harvard and MIT connections

Perosphere has debuted with plans to apply new drug delivery tech to treatments already on the market. The idea is that the resulting enhanced drug could become useful in a new indication. Or, the revamped drug could serve as a treatment improved for an existing use, with drug delivery tech that makes it safer, more effective or easier to use.

Naturally, the startup is seeking funds. Perosphere announced it's raised its initial $1 million equity investment, though it is seeking a total of $1.5 million in a Series A convertible preferred stock offering. And there's a connection to esteemed MIT researcher and entrepreneur Bob Langer (more on that in a bit). Among the talent involved with the new venture:

  • New CEO Solomon Steiner created and ran three publicly traded drug delivery companies. That includes Biodel ($BIOD), which develops new formulas of approved treatments for conditions such as diabetes and has had regulatory struggles since he retired in early 2010. He also launched MannKind ($MNKD) and Emisphere Technologies ($EMIS), according to his bio. Steiner retired from Biodel in March 2010.
  • Edith Mathiowitz, a tenured professor of medical science and engineering with Brown University's Department of Molecular Pharmacology, will serve as Perosphere's chief scientific officer. She has founded at least one company of her own (the now-defunct Spherics) and was one of many who helped develop Alkermes' ProLease injectable drug delivery technology. Mathiowitz's research includes development of oral bio-adhesive delivery systems for proteins and genes, according to her university biography.

A number of luminaries signed up for the company's scientific advisory board, including Dr. Harvey Cantor, chair of the department of cancer immunology and AIDS at Harvard Medical School. Also advising: MIT's Langer. (Mathiowitz once worked in Langer's lab as a postdoctoral student.)

- here's the release

Related Stories:
Biodel shares plunge after FDA demands two new Ph3 trials
Spherics pockets loan, plans move to Mass.