ExSight Ventures ("EV") is pleased to announce our continued involvement and additional investment in Envision Diagnostics, Inc. ("Envision"). EV joined existing investors and new investors in Envision’s recent Series A financing. Envision is developing diagnostic devices that capture eye exams digitally. Envision's all-in-one box solution enables faster, cheaper, and more accurate readings of an eye exam. The Envision device will translate into higher quality and more efficient eye exams.
EV has committed additional capital in this Series A financing. Proceeds from this Series A round will fund the development of the company's Version 4 Instrument and allow Envision to execute its FDA strategy.
Envision recently successfully completed a clinical trial that compared Envision’s results to standard of care.
Envision continues to develop and iterate on its current prototype at Dr. Rahhal's clinic. Envision's data collection and standardization will revolutionize the standard of care for ophthalmology patients "by enabling consistent, reproducible testing and robust reference ranges that facilitate identification of abnormalities."
Envision's automation will reshape the ophthalmology by decreasing cost, increasing efficiency, improving quality, and standardizing eye exams.
We expect strong demand and a steep adoption curve based on clinical insights by the ExSight team and others. Funding was the single biggest challenge facing the company. With this issue now resolved, we are confident in Envision's ability to deliver on their promise of revolutionizing eye care.
ExSight Ventures (“EV”) is pleased to announce our investment DTx Pharma, Inc. (“DTx”). DTx is developing technology that will utilize RNA-based therapeutics as the preferred modality for personalized treatment across many therapeutic areas. EV joined Eli Lilly, Friedman Bioventure Fund, Viva Biotech LTD, and Rivermount Ventures in a Series A financing of over $10M. The round also includes additional commitments from existing investors Tech Coast Angels members, and long-time partner EyeCRO toward ophthalmology focused drug development work. DTx will use these funds to build their team, advance their technology toward the clinic, and continue to build a strong intellectual property foundation.
EV was first introduced to the DTx CEO, Dr. Arthur Suckow, nearly two years ago by Dr. Jeff Friedman. We have stayed in touch and closely followed the company’s progress. Dr. Jeff Friedman is the founder and managing partner of Friedman BioVentures. Jeff is a clinician and investor that, in addition to investing in DTx, joined the company as COO. The ExSight team also co-invested alongside Dr. Friedman in RetroSense. Dr. Friedman's joining the company is a significant endorsement of DTx’s novel, proprietary technology, and a vote of confidence in founder and CEO, Dr. Suckow.
The biggest hurdle limiting the expansion of oligonucleotides as a therapeutic class is delivery–finding safe and effective ways to get siRNA into cells outside of the liver. This advancement will enable therapeutic access targets that are currently undruggable. These pathways are implicated in inherited retinal disease, autoimmune disease, neurodegenerative disease, cancer, glaucoma, or metabolic disease. In addition to accessing validated but undruggable targets, there are specific advantages to the siRNA mechanism concerning the duration of action and efficacy. These factors differentiate siRNA therapeutics from small molecules, antibodies, and even other oligonucleotide mechanisms.
DTx has developed a proprietary fatty-acid based technology that enables the delivery of siRNA therapeutics across multiple cell types. The company's platform technology permits oligonucleotide therapeutics to compete with small molecules and other biologics across most indications. It makes possible drug targets and diseases that small molecules and biologics cannot modulate.
We recently learned that DTx was able to leverage its technology to improve outcomes in a rodent model of Retinitis Pigmentosa. EyeCRO conducted the studies. This development is the first time DTx has demonstrated therapeutic effects in a disease model! These results further underscore the ExSight thesis; the eye is an ideal proving ground for platform technologies with potential non-ophthalmic indications.
Dr. Suckow has done an exemplary job shepherding this technology through the critical early stages. We are thrilled to join Artie, Jeff, the DTx team, and an impressive group of investors in bringing this platform therapeutic modality closer to helping patients.