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Pfizer Expands Investment in Biotech through Pfizer Ventures

Company will spend $600 million on emerging/growth enterprises, with a focus on neuroscience.

Pfizer Ventures, the venture capital arm of Pfizer, Inc, was founded in 2004 and invests for return in areas of current or future strategic interest to Pfizer. Pfizer recently announced that it will, through Pfizer Ventures, invest $600 million in biotechnology and other emerging growth companies. In addition to this increased funding, Pfizer is expanding its leadership position in venture capital funding with “an expanded team that leverages expertise across venture capital investing, business development, drug discovery and clinical development,” according to the company.

Approximately one-quarter ($150 million) of Pfizer Ventures’ available capital will be invested in promising early-stage neuroscience companies. It will use an equity investment model to support a broad array of early neuroscience research and product development opportunities, which Pfizer says are critical in this nascent area of science. Specific areas of interest include neuro-degeneration, neuro-inflammation and neuro-metabolic disorders.

Six companies already in Pfizer Ventures’ portfolio foxus on neuroscience, including Aquinnah, Autifony, Cortexyme, MindImmune, MISSION, and Neuronetics. Pfizer also helped create and cotninyes to fund the Dementia Discovery Fund (DDF).

“By changing the way we invest in neuroscience, we hope to support an energized community of biotech entrepreneurs who are progressing the understanding of the molecular mechanisms of neurologic diseases and help advance potential treatments for people with neurological conditions,” said Denis Patrick, Ph.D., Vice President, Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development and Managing Partner of Pfizer Ventures.

In addition to neuroscience, Pfizer Ventures will continue to invest in companies targeting other disease areas, such as oncology, inflammation and immunology, rare diseases, internal medicine, and vaccines. It is also interested in companies developing technologies “that have the potential to transform drug discovery, development and manufacturing.”