Pherecydes Pharma raises €8.7M ($10.3M)

Series B financing led by GO CAPITAL and two historical investors, ACE Management and Auriga Partners Funds will allow company to produce phages according to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP), initiate clinical trials with two new products and set up a pharmaceutical production unit in Nantes.

Romainville, France, January 16, 2018

Pherecydes Pharma, a biotechnology company specialized in the research and development of anti-infective therapies based on the use of bacteriophages, today announces that it has raised €8.7M ($10.3M) during a Series B round of financing. The new investors are GO CAPITAL, who led this round, along with Omnes Capital, Fa Dièse, Paris Region Venture Fund, managed by CapDecisif Management and a group of business angels from the Rhône-Alpes region. Historical investors ACE Management, Auriga Partners and Participations Besançon have also contributed significantly to this round of financing.

With this financial support, the company plans to produce phages for compassionate use (ATU or Temporary Authorization for Use) in accordance with GMP. Pherecydes will move two programs into the clinical phase in 2018 and 2019: PHOSA for the treatment of severe Staphylococcus aureus infections and PNEUMOPHAGE for the treatment of Pseudomonas aeruginosa respiratory tract infections. The financing will be used, as well, to set up a 10,000 square feet (approx 1,000M2)pharmaceutical production unit in Nantes. In addition, new research programs will be launched in 2018 and 2019. In addition, new research programs will be launched in 2018 and 2019.

Phage therapy is an innovative therapeutic approach for the treatment of bacterial infections, particularly those acquired in hospitals – (HAI) and/or resistant to antibiotics. According to the O’Neill report, if antibiotic resistance continues to increase it will result in the deaths of 10 million people each year and a 2% to 3.5% reduction in global GDP from 2050 onwards. The WHO estimates that the annual costs generated represent €7bn ($8.3bn) in Europe and $6.5bn (€5.5bn) in the United States. The rapid development of antibiotic resistance has become a major public health issue. In 2017, the WHO published a list of priority targets, which includes those pathogens selected by Pherecydes.

The investors were convinced by the unique expertise developed by the company in the production of highly purified phages. Pherecydes plans to quickly become an integrated company, with its own production capacities. Overall, the biotechnology startup has raised a total of €13.6M ($16.2M). This includes this round of financing, as well as €2.6M ($3.1M) raised in 2015 and €2.3M ($2.7M) raised since its creation in 2007.

“Over the next few years, phage therapy will play a major role in the global fight against antibiotic resistance. We are certain that Pherecydes is in a strong position to become a driving force in phage therapy. We were all attracted by Pherecydes’ high-caliber team as well as the technology platform, which is already clinically well proven on a compassionate use basis. The company has ambitious targets and we are delighted to support the development of such a project with high-quality investors at our side,”said Leila Nicolas, investment director at GO CAPITAL.

“Since the beginning of our relationship with Pherecydes Pharma, we have been able to ascertain the relevance of the technology,” said Delphine Dinard, investment director at ACE Management. “Infections caused by multidrug-resistant bacteria have become a major public health issue. Pherecydes Pharma’s business model means that revenues from the sale of its bacteriophages can be expected in a very short period of time. We are extremely pleased to welcome GO CAPITAL, Omnes, Fa Dièse and new business angels as investors in Pherecydes Pharma to support it in this exciting stage of development.”said Delphine Dinard, investment director at ACE Management.

“This financing is a major step for the company. It allows Pherecydes to become a commercial company with its own industrial capacities”said Guy-Charles Fanneau de La Horie, CEO of Pherecydes Pharma.

Representatives from GO CAPITAL and Omnes will soon be appointed to the company’s supervisory board. Auditors will represent Fa Dièse, Paris Region Venture Fund and the group of business angels. ACE Management and Auriga Partners will keep their seats, as will both current independent members.

New site of Pherecydes Pharma in Nantes

In March 2019, the company took possession of the premises where the BPF bacteriophage production, quality control and phagogram diagnostic laboratories will be installed, as well as new offices.

Ideally located south of the Isle of Nantes in a “medical-pharmaceutical research district” where the future University Hospital Center (CHU) will be implanted, the five-story Nantes Biotech building hosts a business incubator of biotechnology companies and an academic research unit on gene therapy.

In new premises, on 2 levels, will be installed the pharmaceutical manufacturing unit as well as administrative and operational management offices.

Pherecydes Pharma maintains its activity of research and development division in Ile de France within the Biocitech Park, 102 avenue Gaston Roussel, Pasteur Building, 93230 Romainville.

For more information:

Sciences & Avenir returns about phagotherapy

Six years after a first article about phagotherapy (see Sciences et Avenir n ° 795, May 2013), this article by Hervé Ratel (Sciences et Avenir n ° 868, June 2019, french content) returns on this technique developed a century ago by the French Félix d’Hérelle, and still used in Georgia.


Some desperate patients are still turning to this Caucasian state today to treat infections that are resistant to conventional antibiotherapy.

However, this too long neglected therapy raises in recent years a renewed interest in France through research and promising clinical trials.

Pherecydes Pharma, one of the innovative companies working on the subject, is now able to provide high quality phage to precisely treat each infection.

ANSM has recently created a scientific committee to study the feedback from Phagotherapy and its perspectives.

Pherecydes Pharma mentioned in Figaro Santé

In its issue of December 16, 2019, Le Figaro Santé devotes its article “These pathogens who want us good” to bacteriophages, explaining in particular how they destroy bacteria in a targeted manner.


The article mainly talks about the interest they arouse among infectiologists who are looking for alternatives to antibiotics that have become less effective.

We learn that patients with antibiotic-resistant infections are currently spending a lot of money to seek treatment in the Eastern Europe countries that have never given up phage therapy. But this does not correspond to French and European standards for medicines.

For Pr F. Laurent, microbiologist at the Hospices Civils de Lyon, “in France, Pherecydes Pharma is for the moment the only structure to identify, produce, purify and select the most efficient phages, according to good drug practices”.

Specialized research teams are hoping for official recognition of accessible and safe phage therapy in France so as to extend the application authorized today only for compational treatments.

To read on (French content)

Also to review (french content):

A salvage therapy combining bacteriophages and dalbavancin

Following surgery for a brain tumour (Astrocytoma) and the many complications that resulted, a 29-year-old woman developed a persistent Staphylococcus aureus infection.

While palliative care was being considered, in November 2018, compassionate treatment was authorized by the ANSM.

Following her consent, the patient was treated in Dr. Alexandre Bleibtreu’s Infectious and Tropical Diseases Department at the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, with the administration of a therapeutic combination of dalbavancine and bacteriophages provided by Pherecydes-Pharma.

The patient is now in good health.

The full article “Combining bacteriophages and dalbavancin for salvage therapy of complex Staphylococcus aureus extradural empyema” is available on the publication website at the following address: