Trefoil Therapeutics Raises $28 Million Series A to Advance Treatment for Corneal Diseases


SAN DIEGO—Trefoil Therapeutics raised $28 million in an oversubscribed Series A financing, the company announced Tuesday. Trefoil is developing novel engineered fibroblast growth factor-1 proteins (eFGF-1) as a regenerative pharmacologic therapy to treat serious corneal endothelial diseases and epithelial disorders, the announcement noted. The financing included new investors Bios Partners, the Dallas-Fort Worth-based group that led the round, and Access Biotechnology. All existing investors, including Hatteras Venture Partners, Aju IB Investment, Correlation Ventures, ExSight Ventures and InFocus Capital Partners, participated in this financing, according to the announcement.

Trefoil’s lead candidate TTHX1114 is an engineered form of the FGF-1 protein designed to reverse vision loss by stimulating endothelial cell proliferation and migration.

Trefoil said the new funding supports the completion of a Phase 2a proof-of-concept study in corneal endothelial dystrophy, including Fuchs dystrophy, a disease that leads to the deterioration of the endothelial layer on the back surface of the cornea, according to the announcement. Trefoil anticipates filing an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the Food and Drug Administration in early 2020 and initiating the clinical trial soon thereafter.

Separately, Stella M. Robertson, PhD, co-founder of Bios Partners and a former vice president in Research & Development at Alcon, will join Trefoil’s board of directors, the company noted.