Stargazer Pharmaceuticals’ $57 Million Series A Financing


Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati advised Stargazer Pharmaceuticals, Inc. on the deal.

Stargazer Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of novel treatment options for rare eye diseases, announced it has completed a Series A financing totaling $57 million from leading investors Novo Holdings, venBio Partners, Canaan Partners, and Pontifax to develop its proprietary compound STG-001 for treating Stargardt Disease. Stargazer also announced the initiation of a Phase 2a study of STG-001 in Stargardt Disease patients. This Series A financing enables Stargazer to advance development of STG-001 through a pivotal clinical efficacy study potentially leading to a new therapy for the disease, a major cause of vision loss in children and young adults. Stargazer is collaborating with Foundation Fighting Blindness (FFB) for the development of STG-001. FFB also participated in this financing round via their investment vehicle, the Retinal Degeneration Fund.

Stargazer was launched by Novo Ventures, the venture arm of Novo Holdings; Gary Sternberg, M.D., M.B.A., who serves as the company’s chief executive officer; and Silvia Ragno, Ph.D., who serves as the company’s chief operating officer, following licensing of STG-001 from Takeda Pharmaceuticals.

Stargardt Disease is a genetic orphan disease that leads to legal blindness. It is the most common juvenile macular dystrophy, affecting 1 in 8,000 to 1 in 10,000 individuals. There are currently no therapies available for this disease. The Phase 2a study of STG-001 is a multi-center study in the U.S. of subjects with Stargardt Disease comparing 2 doses of STG-001 with regard to safety, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamics. Stargazer has successfully completed a Phase 1 single- and multiple-ascending dose clinical study of STG-001 in healthy volunteers and is planning to initiate a pivotal efficacy study in 2021. Additionally, STG-001 has received Orphan Drug Designation in both the U.S. and EU.

The Wilson Sonsini team based in Boston that represents Stargazer Pharmaceuticals includes Jennifer Fang (Picture), Amanda Creedon, and Tim Featherston, with assistance from Dan Koeppen, Miranda Biven, Stephen Heifetz, Josh Gruenspecht, and Mahnaz Dodge.

Involved fees earner: Miranda Biven – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Amanda Creedon – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Mahnaz Dodge – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Jennifer Fang – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Timothy Featherston – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Joshua Gruenspecht – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Stephen Heifetz – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Dan Koeppen – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati;

Law Firms: Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati;

Clients: Stargazer Pharmaceuticals, Inc.;

Author: Ambrogio Visconti