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River BioMedics Raises Seed Investment to Progress its Cardiovascular Disease Programs

River BioMedics Raises Seed Investment to Progress its Cardiovascular Disease Programs

• Eur 1.8 million seed funding to progress its pipeline of cardiovascular disease targets

• Company appoints Nicky Cooper as its Chief Executive Officer

• Financing round co-led by FIRST Fund, KIKK Capital and Oost NL

Enschede, The Netherlands, 20 January 2022 - River BioMedics, a drug discovery company using advanced 3D human cardiac models, today announced the closure of a 1.8 million Euro seed funding round to progress its pipeline of cardiovascular disease targets and compounds. River BioMedics addresses the high unmet medical need of cardiac diseases with a focus on heart failure. The financing round was co-led by FIRST fund, managed by BioGeneration Ventures (BGV), KIKK Capital and Oost NL.

Heart failure affects 55 million people worldwide, with a healthcare cost of more than 30 billion Euro per year in Europe alone1. Many of the current available medicines merely treat the symptoms of disease rather than targeting the underlying cause. Although in recent years there has been an attempt to find drugs that target the underlying biological mechanisms of the disease, this has been hampered by the lack of good human predictive models for use in target validation and drug discovery. Animal models are expensive and not always predictable of the targeted disease, and 2D cell culture models are unable to measure clinically relevant functional readouts. River BioMedics believes their human-predictive in vitro 3D heart models will address this issue.

River BioMedics's scientific founders, Marcelo Ribeiro, Lisanne Blauw and Robert Passier, are experts in differentiating human-induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) into 3D cardiac models of human disease and in exploring the genetic basis of these diseases to identify clinically relevant molecular targets.

Scientific founder Marcelo Ribeiro noted: “Along with the other scientific founders we are excited by the prospects that this latest seed funding presents. Heart failure represents a huge unmet medical need and the work that River BioMedics is going to embark upon is of utmost importance to the quality of life for families everywhere.”

Rianne Ellenbroek, Investment Manager of FIRST Fund commented: “FIRST Fund via BGV is very excited to support the River BioMedics team on their journey to further build the strong stem cell-based platform that has been developed by River BioMedics’s scientific founders. River BioMedics is now well positioned to leverage their technology for the development of novel therapeutics for cardiac diseases.”

As part of the raise, River BioMedics has appointed Nicky Cooper as their CEO. Nicky has been advising the team since May 2021 and has over 30 years’ experience in drug discovery, gained in small and medium sized biotech companies. “I am looking forward to working with the scientific founders to progress the River BioMedics drug discovery pipeline. The 3D cardiac in vitro models

developed using expertise in cardiac biology, bio-engineering and human induced pluripotent stem cells, places the company at the cutting edge of innovation and in a strong position to build a pipeline that will impact this area of research in the coming years,” noted the new CEO.

The company will be based in Enschede, The Netherlands and operate out of its offices at the campus of the University of Twente (Enschede).

1 James SL et al. Lancet. 2018

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Last Updated: 20-Jan-2022