Kythera garners $40M in third venture round

LA-based Kythera Biopharmaceuticals is looking for a key assist in Japan from a new investor. JAFCO has led a $40 million Series C for the biotech developer of "aesthetic" therapies. BBT Capital Management/Apothecary Capital and PFM joined in the round with existing investors Versant Ventures, ARCH Venture Partners, Prospect Venture Partners, Altitude Life Science Ventures and Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati. Kythera can tap the first $30 million of that round immediately and look for the rest in the first half of next year.

"Not only does JAFCO have outstanding experience in the U.S. market, they are well-poised to assist us with strategic partnership options for our products in Japan and the broader, rapidly-growing Asia market," said Keith Leonard, Kythera's president and CEO. "This financing is a clear recognition of the progress made on and potential of our lead product candidate, ATX-101, which is currently being evaluated in Phase II clinical trials in Europe, Canada, Australia and the U.S. for minimally-invasive reduction of localized fat."

- check out Kythera's release

ALSO: The microRNA start-up Miragen Therapeutics in Boulder, CO wrapped an $8 million Series A led by Atlas Venture and Boulder Ventures with additional investments from private individuals. Release