AUSPEX RAISES $35 MILLION AND APPOINTS VETERAN GERALD PROEHL TO ITS BOARD OF DIRECTORS

LA JOLLA, Calif., Jan. 8, 2014/PRNewswire/ -- Auspex Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a Phase 3 clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing novel medicines for the treatment of orphan diseases, today announced the completion of two separate financings totaling $35 million and appointment of a new Board member:

    •   $20 million Series E equity financing led by Deerfield Management Company and supported by
         existing investors, Thomas, McNerney and Partners, CMEA Capital, Panorama Capital, BioMed
         Ventures and Costa Verde Capital; and
    •   15 mllion, four-year venture loan from Oxford Finance LLC.

"These financings strengthen the balance sheet as we advance SD-809, our lead program, in Phase 3 clinical development for the treatment of chorea associated with Huntington's disease," said Pratik Shah, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of Auspex. "We believe Auspex is in a strong financial and strategic position to continue developing and seeking to commercialize novel medicines for the treatment of orphan diseases."

"We have been impressed by the quality of the management team, the potential of the SD-809 program for the treatment of hyperkinetic movement disorders and the promise of the deuterium chemistry platform," said Jonathan Leff, Partner at Deerfield Management and Chairman of the Deerfield Institute. "We are pleased to be supporting Auspex as it advances development of SD-809 and other compounds in its pipeline of deuterium-substituted analogues of clinically validated drugs," added William Slattery, Partner at Deerfield Management.

The company also announced the addition of Gerald Proehl, former President and CEO of Santarus, Inc., as a member of the company's Board of Directors. Mr. Proehl will serve on the Board in place of David Collier, who is stepping down from the Board.

"We welcome Gerry to the Board of Directors. We believe his management, operational and marketing experience will be valuable as we continue to grow the company and advance our pipeline," said Dr. Shah. "On behalf of Auspex and its Board of Directors, I would like to express my sincere thanks to David Collier for his important contributions to Auspex over the many years he has served on our Board. We appreciate David's and CMEA's continued support of Auspex."

Gerald Proehl was the President and Chief Executive Officer of Santarus, Inc., where he led the sale of Santarus to Salix Pharmaceuticals for $2.6 billion in December 2013. Prior to Santarus, Mr. Proehl was with Hoechst Marion Roussel, Inc. for 14 years, where he served in various capacities, including Vice President of Global Marketing. While at Hoechst, he was responsible for marketing products in multiple therapeutic areas, including the central nervous system. Mr. Proehl holds a B.S. in education from the State University of New York at Cortland, an M.A. in exercise physiology from Wake Forest University, and an M.B.A. from Rockhurst College.  

About Auspex Pharmaceuticals
Auspex Pharmaceuticals is a privately held biopharmaceutical company focused on the treatment of orphan diseases, especially hyperkinetic movement disorders resulting from Huntington's Disease, tardive dyskinesia, and Tourette's Syndrome. Auspex's lead compound, SD-809, is a novel inhibitor of the vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT-2). This investigational new drug, currently in a pivotal Phase 3 study for the treatment of movement disorders associated with Huntington Chorea, offers potential advantages over existing therapies including more consistent blood levels, reduced drug-drug interactions, obviating the need for genotyping of patients, and less frequent dosing. Auspex has employed its deuterium chemistry approach to optimize drugs in several other therapeutic areas including the treatment of fibrotic diseases, autoimmune diseases, neuropathic pain, and an antiplatelet medication. For further information, please visit the company's website www.auspexpharma.com.

SOURCE:     Auspex Pharmaceuticals