Flush with cash, Achaogen continues antibiotic work

Xconomy profiles 2009 Fierce 15 winner Achaogen, a South San Francisco-based antibiotics developer that has raised loads of funding from both the government and venture capital investors. In April the developer raised a heft $56 million in Series C financing to support work on its antibiotic pipeline.

Antibiotic development has been largely ignored by Big Pharma, but there's a critical need for new drugs to treat bacteria that have become resistant to other medications. The company's lead product candidate is ACHN-490, which is in Phase II trials for multi-drug resistant gram-negative bacteria. ACHN-490 has demonstrated a positive safety and dosing profile in Phase I clinical testing and is now headed for Phase II trials.

Despite its ample funding and promising pipeline, Achaogen isn't on the lookout for a potential Big Pharma buyout. "We're really focused on being our own company. We don't want to sell it. We don't want to flip it in two years," CEO Kevin Judice (photo) tells Xconomy. "We want to be a great company with superb focus. There's important work to be done here. We drive to work thinking something we do today could save a lot of lives. It makes it easy to get excited."

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