The Advanced Diagnostics & Therapeutics initiative is hosting a speaker to present a case study of his involvement in developing a start-up company based upon intellectual property from UNC-Chapel Hill. Richard Shea (ND ’85), CEO of Vascular Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (VPI), has been involved since conception. The candidate drug, VPI-2690B, is a monoclonal antibody for the treatment of diabetic complications such as nephropathy. Although Mr. Shea will get into the science to some extent, what is unique here is that VPI very early on developed a joint development agreement with J&J’s Janssen Biotech for funding based upon meeting specific milestones with an option to acquire them if particular clinical trial endpoints are met (2017/2018). This agreement spurred a $16M Series A round. With cash in hand they now need to deliver on the results. There appears to be more and more of these earlier types of development agreements and Mr. Shea could be helpful in explaining the strategies he’s used at VPI and seen elsewhere. Such strategies should be applicable to pharma, biotech, diagnostic assays and medical devices.
A poster for the event can be viewed here.