Milestone News

Fonds Bio-Innovation and MSBi Capital Invest in Milestone Pharmaceuticals

MONTREAL, QC, August 7, 2007 — Fonds Bio-Innovation and MSBi Capital, two venture capital funds that specialize in the financing of biotechnology start-ups, have participated in a C$2.75M (US$2.6M) financing round that Milestone Pharmaceuticals Inc. (“Milestone”) has just closed.

Milestone develops new therapeutic products to treat inflammatory and cardiovascular conditions. Based at the Biotechnology Research Institute (BRI-NRC) in Montreal, Milestone was founded in 2003 by Philippe Douville and Philippe Lamarre, two experienced biopharmaceutical entrepreneurs, and by MSBi Capital. The company constituted at its inception a special panel of pharmacologists and medicinal chemists that proposes development programs for new chemical entities (NCEs), stemming from known molecule classes and using clinically-validated mechanisms of action. The NCEs are then tested on established models, reducing both risk and development time during the pre-clinical, regulatory and clinical phases.

Milestone’s first program revolves around the development of a topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) with disease modifying anti-rheumatic drug (DMARD) properties for conditions such as psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. A need for new anti-inflammatory drugs has emerged following the withdrawal of products such as Vioxx® (Merck) and Bextra® (Pfizer). Prior to withdrawal, these drugs generated several billion dollars in sales world-wide.

A second program will target the development of new inhibitors from a well-known class of cardiovascular drugs, which will allow for the treatment of angina and cardiac arrhythmias.

“Fonds Bio-Innovation is very pleased to work with Milestone as it traverses this development phase. In light of its great commercial potential, this life sciences company aligns with Fonds Bio-Innovation’s investment strategy”, said Mr. Jean-Maurice Plourde, CEO of Gestion Bio-Innovation inc. and of CQVB.

“Milestone offers a unique business model for investors and we are enthusiastic about providing continued financial and business support to the company, notably in light of the rapid progress demonstrated to date in its drug development programs”, said Dr. Cédric Bisson, Partner in charge of Life Sciences at MSBi Capital.

“Milestone is highly gratified at MSBi and Fonds Bio-Innovation’s involvement, which will allow the company to accelerate its development programs for cardiovascular and anti-inflammatory agents” concluded Dr. Philippe Douville, Chief Executive Officer of Milestone Pharmaceuticals Inc.