Elcelyx Therapeutics Raises $4M to Treat Obesity and Diabetes

8/13/12Follow @bvbigelow

After two years of maintaining a low profile, San Diego’s Elcelyx Therapeutics says it has secured a $4 million extension on its Series B round of private equity financing. The startup, which is focused on treatments for obesity and diabetes, has been developing compounds to boost the signal along the appetite-control pathway that tells your brain you’re gut is full.

Elcelyx still wants to raise an additional $3 million, and says its existing investors Morgenthaler Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and Technology Partners all participated in the extension. The latest $4 million brings overall funding at Elcelyx to $20 million.

The company says the extra funding will be used to support late-stage clinical trials for its proprietary blend of “generally recognized as safe” dietary ingredients (Lovidia) for use in nutritional supplements, and other food and beverage products. Elcelyx says its product increases the body’s production of natural satiety and gluco-regulatory gut hormones twofold.

Elcelyx also has been working with a delayed release formulation of generic metformin HCL (NewMet) for treatment of Type 2 diabetes. Elcelyx says its technology includes first-in-class “Gut Sensory Modulators (GSM)” that intensify the body’s natural food-driven signals that trigger a sense of fullness and facilitate glucose regulation. The company says its approach also reduces nausea and vomiting that some diabetic patients experience while on metformin.

In a separate statement, Elcelyx named former Mpex Pharmaceuticals executive Mark Wiggins as senior vice president of business development. The company also said former Amylin CEO Ginger Graham was elected to its board of directors.

Bruce V. Bigelow is the editor of Xconomy San Diego. You can e-mail him at bbigelow@xconomy.com or call (619) 669-8788 Follow @bvbigelow

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