Blog

Caraway Therapeutics Establishes Collaboration with AbbVie to Develop Novel Small Molecule Therapeutics for Parkinson’s Disease and Other Related Disorders

  • Leverages Caraway’s unique drug discovery platform and expertise in cellular clearance
  • Collaboration to focus on development of TMEM175 modulators in Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. June 9, 2021 – Caraway Therapeutics today announced an exclusive, collaboration and option agreement with AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) to develop and commercialize Caraway’s small molecule therapeutics targeting TMEM175, a potassium ion channel critical to lysosomal function implicated in both Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other neurodegenerative disorders.

TMEM175 is a compelling target with strong genetic support. Loss of function mutations in TMEM175 are associated with reduced lysosomal efficiency in a subpopulation of PD patients, that can manifest as earlier age of disease onset or elevated risk of dementia relative to idiopathic PD. Under this collaboration, Caraway will continue to advance proprietary small molecule TMEM175 modulators, leveraging Caraway’s unique drug discovery platform and expertise in lysosomal biology and cellular clearance mechanisms, and combine with AbbVie’s expertise in disease biology, clinical development, and global commercialization.

“TMEM175 is a compelling genetically validated target for which Caraway has developed a promising drug discovery program. Collaborating with Caraway to advance TMEM175 modulators has great potential to fit with AbbVie’s efforts to develop transformative treatments for patients with neurodegenerative diseases,” said Eric Karran, Ph.D., Vice President, Neuroscience Discovery at AbbVie.

“We are delighted to partner with AbbVie on Caraway’s TMEM175 pipeline program for Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders,” said Martin D. Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Caraway Therapeutics. “Variants in TMEM175 that reduce lysosomal function are highly prevalent genetic risk factors for the development of PD and evidence suggests that patients with reduced TMEM175 function tend to have earlier age of disease onset and increased risk of dementia. We are looking forward to collaborating with AbbVie to develop novel TMEM175 modulators and bring new hope to patients suffering from Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative disorders.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Caraway will receive an upfront cash payment of $17 million. After Caraway completes certain pre-clinical research and development activities for the collaboration program, AbbVie has an option to license the program and proceed into IND-enabling studies, clinical development, and commercialization.

Caraway is eligible to receive up to $267 million in payments, including upfront and future option payments, and development milestones. Caraway is also eligible to receive additional regulatory and commercial milestones, tiered royalties on global commercial sales, and has the option to participate in product development in return for higher royalty rates.

Caraway is a portfolio company of AbbVie Ventures.

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of genetically defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. The company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components by modulating lysosomal function. Caraway is utilizing its unique product engine with proprietary insights into lysosomal function and small molecule ion channel modulation to develop a robust pipeline of precision therapeutic candidates with disease-modifying potential for patients. The company is backed by top-tier investors, including SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRLV Fund, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Eisai Innovation.

Caraway is based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please visit www.carawaytx.com.

 

Contacts
Media Contact:
MacDougall
Kari Watson or Nicholas Chang
(781) 235-3060
kwatson@macbiocom.com or nchang@macbiocom.com

 

Caraway Therapeutics Establishes Collaboration with AbbVie to Develop Novel Small Molecule Therapeutics for Parkinson’s Disease and Other Related Disorders

CAMBRIDGE, MA – June 9, 2021 – Caraway Therapeutics today announced an exclusive, collaboration and option agreement with AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) to develop and commercialize Caraway’s small molecule therapeutics targeting TMEM175, a potassium ion channel critical to lysosomal function implicated in both Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other neurodegenerative disorders.

TMEM175 is a compelling target with strong genetic support. Loss of function mutations in TMEM175 are associated with reduced lysosomal efficiency in a subpopulation of PD patients, that can manifest as earlier age of disease onset or elevated risk of dementia relative to idiopathic PD. Under this collaboration, Caraway will continue to advance proprietary small molecule TMEM175 modulators, leveraging Caraway’s unique drug discovery platform and expertise in lysosomal biology and cellular clearance mechanisms, and combine with AbbVie’s expertise in disease biology, clinical development, and global commercialization.

“TMEM175 is a compelling genetically validated target for which Caraway has developed a promising drug discovery program. Collaborating with Caraway to advance TMEM175 modulators has great potential to fit with AbbVie’s efforts to develop transformative treatments for patients with neurodegenerative diseases,” said Eric Karran, Ph.D., Vice President, Neuroscience Discovery at AbbVie.

“We are delighted to partner with AbbVie on Caraway’s TMEM175 pipeline program for Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders,” said Martin D. Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Caraway Therapeutics. “Variants in TMEM175 that reduce lysosomal function are highly prevalent genetic risk factors for the development of PD and evidence suggests that patients with reduced TMEM175 function tend to have earlier age of disease onset and increased risk of dementia. We are looking forward to collaborating with AbbVie to develop novel TMEM175 modulators and bring new hope to patients suffering from Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative disorders.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Caraway will receive an upfront cash payment of $17 million. After Caraway completes certain pre-clinical research and development activities for the collaboration program, AbbVie has an option to license the program and proceed into IND-enabling studies, clinical development, and commercialization.

Caraway is eligible to receive up to $267 million in payments, including upfront and future option payments, and development milestones. Caraway is also eligible to receive additional regulatory and commercial milestones, tiered royalties on global commercial sales, and has the option to participate in product development in return for higher royalty rates.

Caraway is a portfolio company of AbbVie Ventures.

 

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of genetically defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. The company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components by modulating lysosomal function. Caraway is utilizing its unique product engine with proprietary insights into lysosomal function and small molecule ion channel modulation to develop a robust pipeline of precision therapeutic candidates with disease-modifying potential for patients. The company is backed by top-tier investors, including SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRLV Fund, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Eisai Innovation.

Caraway is based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please visit www.carawaytx.com.

 

Media Contact:
MacDougall

Kari Watson or Nicholas Chang
(781) 235-3060

kwatson@macbiocom.com or nchang@macbiocom.com

Caraway Therapeutics to Participate at Two Upcoming Investor Events in April 2021

CAMBRIDGE, MA –March 25, 2021 – Caraway Therapeutics today announced that the Company is scheduled to participate at two upcoming virtual investor events in April 2021.

Caraway’s Chief Executive Officer, Martin D. Williams, will present at the Stifel CNS Day on April 1, 2021 at 2:30pm ET and the Company is participating in the Needham Annual Healthcare Conference on April 13, 2021.

“I look forward to discussing the details of Caraway’s approach to developing treatments for genetically-defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases at Needham’s and Stifel’s upcoming events,” said Williams. “Our approach to creating oral small molecule therapeutics is informed by genetic data and our unique insights into lysosomal function, and I am pleased to have the opportunity to share our recent scientific progress.”

 

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of genetically-defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. The company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components by modulating autophagy and lysosomal function. Caraway is utilizing its unique product engine with proprietary insights into lysosomal function and small molecule ion channel modulation to develop a robust pipeline of precision therapeutic candidates with disease-modifying potential for patients. The company is backed by top-tier investors, including SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRLV Fund, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Eisai Innovation.

Caraway is based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please visit www.carawaytx.com.

Media Contact:
MacDougall

Caroline Rufo, PhD or Kari Watson
(781) 235-3060

crufo@macbiocom.com or kwatson@macbiocom.com

 

 

Caraway Therapeutics to Present at the Oppenheimer Winter Private Company Showcase

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – January 25, 2021 – Caraway Therapeutics today announced that the Company’s Chief Executive Officer, Martin D. Williams, will present at the Winter Private Company Showcase, co-hosted by Solebury Trout, Oppenheimer and White & Case on Friday, January 29, 2021 at 11am Eastern Time. The presentation will provide an overview of the Company’s unique approach to enhancing endogenous cellular clearance mechanisms as a therapeutic strategy for genetically defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. Recent progress from Caraway’s TRPML1 and TMEM175 programs will be highlighted.

 

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of genetically defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. The company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components by modulating autophagy and lysosomal function. Caraway is utilizing its unique product engine with proprietary insights into lysosomal function and small molecule ion channel modulation to develop a robust pipeline of precision therapeutic candidates with disease-modifying potential for patients. The company is backed by top-tier investors, including SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRLV Fund, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Eisai Innovation.

Caraway is based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please visit www.carawaytx.com.

Media Contact:
MacDougall

Caroline Rufo, PhD or Kari Watson
(781) 235-3060

crufo@macbiocom.com or kwatson@macbiocom.com

 

 

Caraway Therapeutics Receives Research Grant from The Michael J. Fox Foundation to Further Investigate the Function of the Lysosomal Ion Channel TMEM175 and Gene Variants Linked to Parkinson’s Disease

CAMBRIDGE, MA –November 18, 2020 – Caraway Therapeutics today announced that the Company has been awarded a second research grant from The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF). This latest grant builds on Caraway’s drug discovery research focused on the role of lysosomal function and autophagy in neurodegenerative and rare diseases to further investigate the role of TMEM175, a lysosomal ion channel genetically implicated in Parkinson’s disease (PD).

Recent genetic data from multiple studies indicate that variants in TMEM175 impact both age of onset and incidence of PD. Decreased TMEM175 function reduces lysosomal efficiency in neuronal cells, which is strongly associated with Parkinson’s disease. Furthermore, overexpression of TMEM175 reduces the pathology observed in neurons that occurs with synuclein exposure, potentially enhancing neuronal health. The Company will use the grant funding to further investigate the role of TMEM175 in cellular models of disease and evaluate the utility of TMEM175 agonists as therapeutics, and ultimately to develop a new class of PD therapeutics.

“Receiving this grant from The Michael J. Fox Foundation is extremely validating for our science, and we are honored to work with the organization,” said Martin D. Williams, Chief Executive Officer at Caraway Therapeutics. “Our unique drug discovery platform, electrophysiology capabilities and expertise in lysosomal function will allow us to rapidly advance this program towards the clinic.”

“Mutations in TMEM175 are clear risk factors for the development of Parkinson’s disease,” added Magdalene Moran, Chief Scientific Officer at Caraway Therapeutics. “Our approach is to activate this potassium channel to restore lysosomal function. Lysosomal dysfunction is emerging as a driver of PD pathology in both familial and idiopathic forms of disease. We believe that TMEM175 agonists could be an important way to alleviate this dysfunction.”

“Our Foundation funds research into emerging therapeutic options for people living with Parkinson’s today and for those who may be at risk of developing this disease. We are glad to support Caraway’s investigation of TMEM175 as a novel therapeutic target toward our goal of a world without Parkinson’s disease,” said Marco Baptista, MJFF Vice President of Research Programs.

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of genetically-defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. The company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components by modulating autophagy and lysosomal function. Caraway is utilizing its unique product engine with proprietary insights into lysosomal function and small molecule ion channel modulation to develop a robust pipeline of precision therapeutic candidates with disease-modifying potential for patients. The company is backed by top-tier investors, including SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRLV Fund, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Eisai Innovation.

Caraway is based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please visit www.carawaytx.com.

Media Contact:

MacDougall

Caroline Rufo, PhD or Kari Watson
(781) 235-3060

crufo@macbiocom.com or kwatson@macbiocom.com

 

 

 

Caraway Therapeutics to Present at Two Upcoming Virtual Conferences in November 2020

CAMBRIDGE, MA –November 10, 2020 – Caraway Therapeutics today announced that the Company is scheduled to present at two upcoming virtual conferences during November, 2020.

Caraway’s Chief Executive Officer, Martin D. Williams, will present at the Stifel Virtual Healthcare Conference on November 18, 2020 at 8:40am ET.

Caraway’s President and Chief Scientific Officer, Magdalene Moran, Ph.D., will present in two sessions at the Autophagy Showcase at the Drugging Autophagy Summit on November 19th. Dr. Moran will moderate and participate in the panel discussion titled, ‘How Much is Our Understanding of the Fundamental Biology Impacting the Druggability of Autophagy?’ on November 19, 2020 at 10:05am ET and will deliver a presentation titled, ‘Targeting TRPML1 for Neurodegenerative Disease’ on November 19, 2020 at 11:05am ET. For more information about the Drugging Autophagy Summit visit https://www.druggingautophagy.com/.

“At Caraway we are developing an approach to combine genetic data and our unique understanding of lysosomal function to discover small molecules that activate a cell’s clean-up and recycling processes thereby accelerating clearance of toxic materials and defective cellular components,” said Martin D. Williams, Chief Executive Officer of Caraway Therapeutics. “Magdalene and I are pleased to continue to showcase this targeted approach and the importance of modulating lysosomal function as a therapeutic strategy at the Stifel Banking Conference and Drugging Autophagy Summit.”

 

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of genetically-defined neurodegenerative and rare diseases. The company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components by modulating autophagy and lysosomal function. Caraway is utilizing its unique product engine with proprietary insights into lysosomal function and small molecule ion channel modulation to develop a robust pipeline of precision therapeutic candidates with disease-modifying potential for patients. The company is backed by top-tier investors, including SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRLV Fund, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Eisai Innovation.

 

Media Contact:
MacDougall
Caroline Rufo, PhD or Kari Watson
(781) 235-3060
crufo@macbiocom.com or kwatson@macbiocom.com

Rheostat Therapeutics Announces Rebrand to Caraway Therapeutics and New Kendall Square Office

CAMBRIDGE, MA – October 10, 2019 – Rheostat Therapeutics, an emerging biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of debilitating neurodegenerative diseases by preserving neurons, today announced the company has changed its name to Caraway Therapeutics.

Caraway Therapeutics is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating autophagy, the cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components. The company has a rigorous product engine with multiple approaches, that leverage genetically defined targets to find potential treatments for patients suffering the devastating effects of neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Magdalene Moran, PhD, President and Chief Scientific Officer of Caraway, said, “We chose to rebrand the company as ‘Caraway’ because it is suggestive of our scientific approach, to ‘carry away’ cell refuse. With more than six million Americans suffering from neurodegenerative disease, we are committed to addressing an urgent unmet medical need by discovering and developing better treatments.”

Caraway also announced that it has relocated its laboratories and offices in Kendall Square, the life sciences innovation epicenter of Cambridge, MA. The new facility accommodates Caraway’s anticipated growth and facilitates engagement with stakeholders in the biopharma community, including potential partners and collaborators.

Caraway is backed by top tier investors. In November 2018, the company announced the close of a $23 million Series A financing by SV Health Investors, AbbVie Ventures, MRL Ventures, Amgen Ventures, Dementia Discovery Fund, Alexandria Venture Investments and Mayo Clinic.

“With a world-class team of scientists in our new Kendall Square space, we are well positioned to identify novel treatments for neurodegenerative disease,” said Tim Harris, PhD, DSc, co-founder and Scientific Advisory Board Chair. “We look forward to growing the Caraway team and advancing our programs to ultimately provide disease-modifying therapeutics to patients.”

About Caraway Therapeutics

Caraway Therapeutics is an emerging biopharmaceutical company pursuing novel approaches for the treatment of debilitating neurodegenerative diseases by preserving neurons. Co-founded by renowned scientists in cellular biology, the company is a leader in the cutting-edge science of activating cellular recycling processes to clear toxic materials and defective cellular components. Caraway has a rigorous product engine with multiple approaches to potentially disease-modifying compounds for patients suffering the devastating effects of neurodegenerative diseases.

Caraway is based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please visit https://carawaytx.com

 

Media Contact:
Gina Cestari
6 Degrees
(917) 797-7904
gcestari@6degreespr.com

Rheostat Therapeutics Announces $23 Million Series A Financing To Develop Potential Treatments for Neurodegenerative Diseases

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 26, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Rheostat Therapeutics, a biotech company focused on the discovery of novel treatments for neurodegeneration, cognition and rare diseases, today announced the close of a Series A financing round totaling $23 million. Proceeds will be used to advance its programs towards clinical trials, build its internal team and expand studies evaluating biomarkers.

The round was co-led by MRLV and AbbVie Ventures, and included Amgen Ventures, Alexandria Venture Investments and Mayo Clinic. Existing investors SV Health Investors and the Dementia Discovery Fund also participated. As part of this latest round of financing the company will be expanding its board to include Reza Halse, President of MRLV, and John Gustofson, Managing Director at AbbVie Ventures.

Rheostat is working to develop novel treatments for neurodegenerative disease through modulation of mitophagy and autophagy. Its central thesis is that the degradation of toxic cellular components is a fundamental node of biology. The mutations that impair these clearance pathways have been linked with multiple neurodegenerative diseases, many of which are associated with cognitive impairment like Parkinson’s disease. The company is working to leverage its understanding of these pathways to discover and develop novel small molecules that will restore cellular balance and treat neurodegenerative and rare diseases.

“Mitophagy and autophagy represent a fundamental, powerful node of biology with the real potential to improve the lives of patients suffering from a range of neurodegenerative diseases and senescence. Our investors have provided our world-class scientific team with the funding to continue to build Rheostat and advance our programs toward the clinic,” said Joshua Resnick, MD Chairman and Interim CEO of the company.

Rheostat was incubated and seeded by SV Health Investors and the Dementia Discovery Fund and founded by Tim Harris, EVP R&D at Bioverativ, a Sanofi company; Wade Harper, Chair & Professor of Cell Biology at Harvard Medical School and the Bert and Natalie Vallee Professor of Molecular Pathology; Tony Hyman, Director of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics: Dresden, Germany; and Ivan Dikic, Director of the Institute of Biochemistry II at the University Clinic, Frankfurt. The company’s Chief Scientific Officer is Magdalene Moran, and it is also guided by a Scientific Advisory Board, comprised of the founders, Wolfdieter Springer, Ph.D., (Mayo Clinic) and Bernardo Sabatini, MD, Ph.D., (Alice and Rodman W. Moorhead III Professor of Neurobiology, Harvard Medical School; and HHMI Investigator).

About MRLV
MRLV is the therapeutics focused venture capital group within Merck. MRLV is disease area and therapeutic modality agnostic, investing globally in early-stage companies developing highly differentiated medicines based on groundbreaking science. The MRLV team has deep venture capital expertise and, where appropriate, leverages the substantial resources of Merck to benefit its portfolio companies.

About AbbVie Ventures
AbbVie Ventures is the strategic investment arm of AbbVie, the global biopharmaceutical company. A core component of AbbVie’s integrated approach to external innovation, we invest in very early stage transformational scientific opportunities that augment AbbVie’s core R&D areas within oncology, immunology and neurodegenerative diseases. We work closely with management teams of portfolio companies to support them in executing on their development goals to achieve the best outcomes. For more information, please visit: https://www.abbvie.com/partnerships/abbvie-ventures.html.

About Amgen Ventures
Amgen Ventures provides emerging biotechnology companies with financial and other resources to develop pioneering discoveries focused on human therapeutics. Since 2004, Amgen Ventures has invested in biotechnology companies to advance promising medicines and technologies that could ultimately make a difference for patients suffering from serious illnesses. Leveraging Amgen’s industry leadership, deep knowledge, and longstanding expertise in biotechnology, Amgen Ventures’ investments are made in areas of strategic focus for the company to support innovation and generate financial return.

About Alexandria Venture Investments
Alexandria Venture Investments, founded in 1996, is the strategic venture capital arm of Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. Alexandria Venture Investments focuses on novel, breakthrough discoveries in biopharma, diagnostics, research tools, agtech and technology. Based on its experience and in-depth understanding of the life science and technology industries, its long-term relationships with leading investors and its world-class international scientific advisory network, Alexandria Venture Investments is uniquely positioned to fund seed-, early- and growth-stage companies.

About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit organization committed to clinical practice, education and research, providing expert, comprehensive care to everyone who needs healing. Learn more about Mayo Clinic. Visit the Mayo Clinic News Network.

About SV Health Investors
SV Health Investors, formerly named SV Life Sciences, is a healthcare and life sciences venture capital and growth equity firm. SV targets early-stage opportunities in biotechnology; early-stage and revenue-stage opportunities in medical devices; and growth equity investments for later-stage businesses in healthcare services and digital health. Over the past 20 years, SV Health Investors has invested in more than 175 companies. The firm currently has over $2.5 billion of capital commitments under management. SV Health Investors has offices in Boston and London. For more information, please visit www.svhealthinvestors.com.

About the Dementia Discovery Fund (DDF)
The DDF is a venture capital fund which invests in projects and companies to discover and develop novel, effective disease-modifying therapeutics for dementia. Seven leading pharmaceutical companies (Biogen, Eli Lilly and Company, GSK, Johnson & Johnson, Otsuka (Astex), Pfizer and Takeda), AARP, Aegon, Bill Gates, British Patient Capital, NFL Players Association, Quest Diagnostics, UnitedHealth Group, Woodford Investment Management via Woodford Patient Capital Trust (WPCT), the UK’s Department of Health and Social Care and charity Alzheimer’s Research UK have invested in the DDF to date. Heads of Neuroscience and R&D represent these strategic investors on the DDF Scientific Advisory Board and work closely with SV’s dedicated team of neuroscientists and experts to identify and evaluate novel approaches for the treatment of dementia. SV won the bid to become Manager in a competitive selection process held in 2015. www.theddfund.com