SOURCE: Spruce Capital Partners

August 18, 2015 12:55 ET

BioMalaysia and ASEAN Bioeconomy 2015 Recognizes Sentinext Therapeutics With Bio Innovation of the Year Award

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA--(Marketwired - Aug 18, 2015) - BioMalaysia and ASEAN Bioeconomy 2015 awarded Sentinext Therapeutics Sdn Bhd the prestigious Bio Innovation of the Year Award 2015, according to the Malaysian Life Sciences Capital Fund, investors in Sentinext. After the 2015 BioPharm Asia Award, this represents the second major Asian biotech award Sentinext received this year.

A panel of judges selected Sentinext, a developer of next-generation vaccines to protect against enteroviral diseases with significant unmet medical needs, to receive the award after a stringent review process. The panel in selecting the company recognized Sentinext for its long standing commitment to innovation. The award was presented on August 18 during the Bio Appreciation Night 2015 at the Putra World Trade Centre, Kuala Lumpur.

Employing proprietary cutting-edge virus-like particles (VLP) technology, Sentinext is a biotechnology company developing superior vaccines to combat diseases for which there are significant unmet medical need. VLP technology mimics the natural virus structure, but does not contain any viral genetic material. As such, it can generate a strong immune response without the danger of being infectious. Sentinext's flagship development product is a bivalent prophylactic vaccine against Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) that covers up to 95 percent of infections caused by two different viruses -- Enterovirus 71 (EV71) and Coxsackievirus A16 (CVA16). Therapeutic agents to treat HFMD are also a part of Sentinext development portfolio. In addition, Sentinext is extending its VLP technology to Polio, an important target for post eradication management of the disease.

Sentinext is built on research spanning more than 20 years by eminent Malaysian scientist Dr. Jane Cardosa, internationally renowned for her work on diseases and viruses including HFMD; Dengue, and viral encephalitis. The company is headquartered in Penang, Malaysia, and has a global network of development partners and advisors in the United States, Europe, and Australia.

The Malaysian Life Sciences Capital Fund (MLSCF), co-managed by Spruce Capital Partners and Xeraya Capital, provided the initial and ongoing financing to Sentinext, helped the company establish itself, and has actively assisted the company in developing its innovative vaccines.

"This is a gratifying acknowledgment of the innovative work Sentinext has performed to combat neglected infectious diseases in the Asia-Pacific region," said Dr. Ganesh Kishore, Chairman of Sentinext and CEO of MLSCF. "The company's Plug and Play platform allows for the production of safe vaccines to combat emerging and spreading viral diseases."

Dr. Uwe Schlokat, the CEO of Sentinext, emphasizes and acknowledges the strong support and commitment of its investors MLSCF, MTDC, MAVCAP and AIM, and states that, "The second major award in 2015 now received by Sentinext clearly recognizes the company's dedication in striving towards the development of superior agents to protect those who need it most: our children."

"Building a company like Sentinext in a region where the emphasis has been on producing generic and cheap vaccines has not been an easy journey. Raising the resources to develop new vaccines and partnering with cutting edge entities and leading global talent have been central to our success," said Dr. Jane Cardosa, CSO of Sentinext, in accepting the award. "We are grateful to BioMalaysia for this recognition of our efforts to develop innovative vaccines that can prevent important child hood diseases that also negatively affect the aging population."

About Malaysian Life Sciences Capital Fund
Co-managed by Spruce Capital Partners and Xeraya Capital, the Malaysian Life Sciences Capital Fund ("MLSCF") is an investor in several leading agricultural, energy, healthcare and industrial biotechnology companies. Four of the thirteen MLSCF investee companies are publicly listed entities in the United States and Switzerland. MLSCF is partnering with other Malaysian investors to build a globally competitive, state-of-the-art vaccine company in Malaysia. The other companies are similarly renowned globally for their leading-edge technology-driven business and located in United States and Europe.

About Spruce Capital Partners
The principals and founders of Spruce Capital Partners, Dr. Ganesh Kishore, Dr. Roger Wyse and Greg Young, are well known investors and thought leaders in the biogreentech sector. They bring a wealth of experience as investors, advisers, and domain experts in helping entrepreneurs build the next generation of successful biogreentech companies. They formed Spruce Capital Partners not only to manage venture funds, but also to develop new talent for the industry, provide thought leadership, and promote innovation in companies and countries. The principals have worked together for more than 10 years and have shepherded investments across multiple funds and multiple sectors. The principals of Spruce Capital Partners are also active in advising, partnering, and shaping the life sciences industry globally, especially in Malaysia and United States. Additional information is available at www.sprucecp.com.

About Xeraya Capital
Xeraya Capital is a venture capital and private equity firm focused exclusively on Life Sciences investments. From its base in Malaysia, Xeraya's investment activities span the globe with current investments in the US, Europe and Asia. Beyond capital, the firm leverages its experiences, affiliations and networks to enable startups' successes. While the firm manages multiple pools of funds each with its own objectives, the Malaysian Life Sciences Capital Fund and MLS Capital Fund II embody Xeraya's biogreentech endeavors. Xeraya Capital is led by Fares Zahir, who is also the Co-Chair of MLSCF. Additional information is available at www.xeraya.com.

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