Forma Therapeutics Snags $25.5M Venture Round, Punctuating Startup’s Breakout Year

12/1/09Follow @xconomy

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to raise the odds of success in drug development, in which currently only one out of 10 drugs entering clinical trials is good enough to become an FDA approved product, the benefit would be obvious. Forma has no drugs that have yet entered that tough proving ground, but its roster of partners apparently like the company’s chances. Forma now has two separate deals in place with Novartis, one with Cubist, another with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and one more with the Experimental Therapeutics Centre of Singapore.

While the capital markets have been tough this year, Tregay says he’s still finding partners who are hungry to get better at drug discovery. “If one has a differentiated platform, there are still lots of opportunities out there,” Tregay says. “It’s exciting.” He didn’t offer up much in the way of specifics about where Forma is really going strategically from here, though.

What Tregay would say about Forma’s future is that the new financing should ensure that the company has enough cash to operate at least through 2011 and probably longer, Tregay says. Forma isn’t planning to do much additional hiring because it has already built up much of the in-house skill it believes it needs to be fast and productive, he says. And with the new money, the company will be able to continue to invest in building up its internal pipeline of drug candidates, rather than relying entirely on doing work for partners.

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