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TrueBinding Raises $100M For Alzheimer’s Treatment As Sector Grows

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Foster City, California-based TrueBinding raised $100 million to tackle neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, according to SEC filings from Wednesday.

The filing did not specify the round’s investors and the company declined to comment.

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The 6-year-old biotech startup has long been working on a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Last year, the Food and Drug Administration granted the company Investigational New Drug clearance. This allows the company to expedite the process of shipping the drug to people across state lines. TrueBinding has since been conducting a clinical trial that is expected to end in October.

Medical ecosystem funding

TrueBinding joins a slew of startups tackling Alzheimer’s, a cognitive disease that causes dementia. According to Crunchbase data, Hong Kong-based Insilico Medicine and Massachusetts-based Cognito Therapeutics both raised $60 million and $53.3 million, respectively, in June.

Another Massachusetts startup, Alzheon, raised $50 million in April, and California’s Neuron23 raised $100 million in March from SoftBank Vision Fund. The FDA approved the first Alzheimer’s drug in two decades in 2021 with Adulhelm, a controversial treatment developed by Biogen that Medicare blocked most of its patients from accessing, citing concerns around efficacy and potentially dangerous side effects.

In a medical ecosystem where the primary goal is to lower health care spending, treatments for long-lasting diseases like Alzheimer’s are especially in demand and largely recession-proof. Crunchbase data shows 2020 was a banner year for Alzheimer’s funding—global venture investment in the space reached $262 million (compared to $126.1 million the year prior), largely going to a handful of biotech startups like Neuron23 and Amylyx Pharmaceuticals. Funding last year reached nearly $245.9 million.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates around 5.8 million people in the U.S. have dementia. The cost of treating Alzheimer’s in 2020 was an estimated $305 billion. The U.S. saw higher death rates among Alzheimer’s and dementia patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. That was largely due to its prevalence among lower-income people who often cannot afford the full spectrum of caretaking resources required to treat people with the virus.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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