NeXeption raises $21.5M to launch dermatology startup Alexar

Biotech management company NeXeption has locked in $21.5 million in a Series A round of financing to form Alexar Therapeutics, a company with a focus on treating skin conditions called inflammatory cutaneous disorders.

The Series A financing is led by New Science Ventures and Third Point Ventures with participation from Palo Alto Investors and will fund early development of Alexar's lead compound, A-110, a topical Liver X receptor (LXR) agonist.

LXR agonists--which act as powerful anti-inflammatory agents--belong to a class of proteins called nuclear receptors that help regulate certain genetic pathways. Alexar is looking to develop a portfolio of these agonists for both systemic and local use.

"There is a growing need among patients and physicians for innovative therapeutics that treat inflammatory skin disorders," said NeXeption partner Dr. Neal Walker, who will serve as Alexar's vice chairman. "This portfolio of products has a well-established mechanism of action applicable to a number of indications in dermatology as well as demonstrated potential in other therapeutic areas."

Malvern, PA-based NeXeption's business model identifies product development opportunities like A-110, rounds up the capital and management teams and then works to get the asset ready for a buyout deal.

Dave Pfeiffer, former chief commercial officer of the dermatology company Ellman International, has been named CEO of the newly formed Alexar. NeXeption Managing Partner Steve Tullman will serve as chairman of Alexar's board of directors.

- here's the press release