FSHD Unlimited publishes 2016 Annual Report
Facio provides updates on operational progress and financial results
May 5, 2017
Facio Therapies announced today that its parent company, FSHD Unlimited, published its audited Annual Report for the year 2016. Having raised €875,000 in equity, the Facio group of companies ended the report period with €1.1M in cash and cash equivalents. Expenses were mainly directed at Facio’s drug discovery program, resulting in 300+ validated hits early 2017 with the potential to tackle the cause of FSHD. These results enable Facio to start building a portfolio of DUX4-repressing compounds representing multiple shots on goal.
During 2016, Facio achieved two breakthroughs in FSHD drug discovery. In August, Facio announced the development of the first-ever validated platform to screen large numbers of compounds for their ability to repress the production of the natural DUX4 protein in cultured muscle cells derived from FSHD patient biopsies. Undue production of DUX4 in skeletal muscle is the cause of FSHD. In December, Facio announced the identification of a variety of compounds with the desired effect (known as “hits”) in its proprietary platform after screening 34,000 compounds. In April 2017, validation of 300+ hits was announced. Currently, Facio and its drug discovery partner, Evotec, are further characterizing these hits, especially with respect to how they work on DUX4. On that basis, selected hits will undergo chemical modification to optimize their safety and efficacy.
“In 2016, we beat the odds by doing something that many believed impossible: establish the very first natural DUX4 drug discovery platform,” noted Kees van der Graaf, Chairman of FSHD Unlimited. “Even more importantly, our platform generated the largest pool of thoroughly validated hits in the FSHD field. We now look forward to developing a portfolio of truly viable disease-modifying drug candidates.”
Facio arose from, works for, and is owned by the FSHD community. In November 2016, Facio raised €875,000 in equity from existing shareholders as well as the Canadian and the Dutch FSHD Foundation. Since September 2014, Facio has received a total of over €3.3M in equity funding.
“We are very proud of the strong and growing support from the FSHD community,” commented Kees van der Graaf. “We expect to raise additional capital from the community in 2017, further strengthening our patient-centric business approach towards the development of safe, effective and affordable FSHD drugs.”
The full 2016 Annual Report may be downloaded here.
About Facio Therapies
Arising from the FSHD community, Facio aims to translate breakthrough results of 25 years of basic research into a therapy that stops the progressive muscle wasting caused by FSHD. That is Facio’s product mission. Facio also aims to make its therapy widely available by using a transparent model for fair and reimbursable pricing. That way, Facio aims to generate sustainable profits to fund additional quality-of-life projects for people with FSHD and to provide liquidity to its shareholders. That is Facio’s socio-economic mission.