Company: Pearl Therapeutics
Based: Redwood City, CA
Investors: Vatera Healthcare Partners, Clarus Ventures, New Leaf Venture Partners and 5AM Ventures
Scoop: Pearl Therapeutics was founded by two former Nektar Therapeutics executives who in-licensed particle technology that could be used to treat respiratory ailments. The company's lead drug is PT003, a combination therapy for COPD. It consists of glycopyrrolate, a long-acting muscarinic antagonist, and formoterol, a long-acting B2-agonist, delivered by a hydrofluoroalkane metered dose inhaler. The funding is supporting Phase II trials of the drug, which are expected to begin this year; Phase III trials that are slated for late 2012. The developer's venture haul totals $102 million since its inception in 2007.