G-Therapeutics has raised € 36 million to develop its novel neuro-stimulation therapy for people with spinal cord injuries (SCI). G-Therapeutics is a spin-off from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), with offices in Eindhoven and Lausanne. Sjaak Deckers, founder and CEO of the company, is well known from his former business Sapiens, that was taken over by Medtronic.
An amount of € 26 million is raised in a Series A investment round co-led by LSP, INKEF Capital, Gimv and Wellington Partners. In addition, G- Therapeutics has secured a € 10 million deferred, risk-bearing ‘innovation loan’ from the Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland (RvO, part of Dutch ministry of Economic Affairs) to support the development of its innovative therapeutic solutions.
G-Therapeutics will use the funds to bring a unique, new therapy for improved rehabilitation of spinal-cord injuries from the lab to patients. In particular, the Company is developing a unique, Implantable Neuro-stimulation System (INS) for electrical stimulation of specific areas of the spinal cord and will subsequently perform a multi-center clinical study to obtain regulatory approval.
The Swiss-Dutch Company is building further upon the scientific achievements of Professor Grégoire Courtine, who occupies the International Paraplegic Foundation Chair in Spinal Cord Repair. For over 15 years, Professor Courtine has been working on unravelling the mechanisms underlying an effective treatment for people with a spinal cord injury affecting the lower limbs. As one of the founders and Chief Scientific Officer of the Company, Professor Courtine comments: “I am delighted that after a decade of dedicated research and all the scientific accomplishments of my team, G-Therapeutics will enable the development of realistic therapeutic solutions for people with spinal cord injury.”
There are two unique attributes about this new therapeutic approach: an implantable neuro-stimulation system (INS) for the spinal cord with real-time motion feedback, and intent-driven rehabilitation. The system enables the INS to deliver electrical pulses to the correct nerves at the appropriate timing to facilitate raising and lowering the legs and feet during walking. It was shown by Courtine’s team that this combination of neuro- stimulation and will-powered training results in a massive remodelling of residual neural connections, restoring voluntary control over paralysed limbs.
The clinical and regulatory activities of the Company will remain in Lausanne. The INS development activities and general management of the Company are based at the High Tech Campus, Eindhoven. Sjaak Deckers: “It is very rewarding to start this unique European endeavor that can bring enormous benefits to these individuals with spinal cord injury. Our international team has all the necessary capabilities to realize Professor Courtine’s vision, backed by a strong investor syndicate of highly renowned medical technology investors.”
Dirk Kersten, Managing Director at INKEF Capital, notes: “INKEF is excited to be part of the G- Therapeutics story which combines world-class science with a team of proven entrepreneurs led by Sjaak Deckers. It is a great opportunity for INKEF working together again with this talented group of people to build towards continued success.”
John de Koning, Partner at LSP, adds: “G-Therapeutics is uniquely positioned to translate an exciting and highly promising technology into products that have the potential to transform the future of spinal cord injury treatment. At LSP, we are looking forward to working once again with this team of experienced professionals, both in the management and at supervisory board level.”