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With $40M Banked, Escient Building for Fast Move to Human Trials

In the weeks since Escient Pharmaceuticals made its debut, the San Diego biotech has found lab space atop San Diego’s Torrey Pines Mesa and is recruiting scientists with experience developing drugs that target G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs).

Escient’s co-founders, CEO Alain Baron and chief scientific officer Marcus Boehm, have been busy, and it took a while to catch up with them after Escient disclosed on May 9 that it has raised $40 million in Series A funding. But then, the co-founders have ambitious plans. In a recent interview with Xconomy, Baron said the initial $40 million should be enough for Escient to screen compounds for targets within a small sub-group of GPCRs, identify a lead drug candidate, and begin human clinical trials within the next three years.

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