Cystic fibrosis (CF) assets sold 2016

  • AmorChem Sells CF Assets to Vertex Pharmaceuticals



Montreal,  November 22,  2016 – AmorChem L.P. today announced the purchase of its cystic fibrosis (CF) assets by Vertex Pharmaceuticals. The molecules acquired interact with the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) protein, known to be defective in people with CF, and will be used in research to help advance Vertex’s CF program.

“Vertex’s expertise and dedication to CF uniquely positions the company to progress these molecules,” said Inès Holzbaur, Ph.D., managing partner at AmorChem. “We are gratified to know that our assets are now on a path to eventually help cystic fibrosis patients.”

Amorchem financially supported the development of the molecultes through a successful collaboration between Prof. David Thomas and Prof. John Hanrahan at McGill University and Traffick Therapeutics Inc., and also NuChem Therapeutics Inc., AmorChem’s medicinal chemistry contract research organization.

“Our venture capital fund was launched on the premise that there is valuable research being achieved in Quebec-based institutions,” said Eliabeth Douvill, managing partner at Amorchem. “This agreement continues to prove that we can indeed deliver highly attractive assets to biotech companies interested by innovative, early-stage research.”

AmorChem  L.P. ( is a venture capital fund located in Montreal focused on investing in promising life science projects originating from Quebec-based universities and research centres. The principal limited partners of this fund are Investissement-­Québec, FIER Partenaires, Fonds de solidarité FTQ and Merck & Co. This fund is the latest addition to the GeneChem portfolio of funds, a fund manager in existence since 1997. AmorChem’s innovative business model involves financing research-­stage projects to enable them to reach pre-­clinical proof-­of-concept (“POC”) in a semi-­virtual mode within 18-­24 months. The fund seeks to generate returns through a two-­pronged exit strategy: sell projects having reached POC to large biotechnology or pharmaceutical companies; or bundle them into new spin-­out companies.  AmorChem using external resources will manage the projects. To that effect, AmorChem has established a strategic partnership with the Biotechnology Research Institute  in order to access its R&D platforms. In addition, to enabling projects requiring small molecules as tools or drug leads, AmorChem has founded NuChem Therapeutics  Inc., a medicinal chemistry contract-­research company.

NuChem  Therapeutics  Inc. ( is a medicinal chemistry contract-­research company wholly-owned by AmorChem. With laboratories situated at the Biotechnology Research Institute in Montreal, the company is led by Dr. Daniel Guay, formerly of Merck Canada and the Institut de recherche en immunologie et cancérologie (IRIC).

Media  contacts:
Elizabeth  Douville

Inès  Holzbaur

Business  development  contact:
John  Clement
514-­849-­‐6477  (o)  ;  514-­‐887-­‐7696  (c)