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Aratana Therapeutics Announces $20 Million Financing

KANSAS CITY, Kan., Jan. 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Aratana Therapeutics, a newly-formed company focused on the development of innovative therapies for the animal health industry, today announced that it has closed a $20 million Series A financing led by MPM Capital and Avalon Ventures.

"At Aratana, we will be focused on taking advancements from the human biopharmaceutical industry and applying them in new ways to treat and care for animals," said Dr. David Rosen, President and Founder of Aratana Therapeutics. "The addition of Dr. Linda Rhodes as CEO and the closing of the $20 million in financing are two major milestones that set Aratana up for future success moving forward."  

Dr. Linda Rhodes, a recognized leader in the fields of human and animal drug discovery and development, will join Aratana in February 2011 as Chief Executive Officer. Previously, Dr. Rhodes was founder and vice-president of clinical development at AlcheraBio, an entrepreneurial contract research organization devoted to helping major animal health companies develop new drugs.

"My entire career has been devoted to developing therapies for animals, and I am looking forward to continuing that work in this exciting, venture-capital model at Aratana," said Dr. Rhodes.

"Drs. Rhodes and Rosen are the perfect duo to execute the vision we have for Aratana," said Dr. Steven St. Peter, Managing Director at MPM Capital.  "Both are veterinarians, one with extensive drug development expertise and the other with extensive business development expertise."

Aratana's board of directors will include Dr. Rhodes; Dr. Steven St. Peter, Managing Director at MPM Capital; Jay Lichter, Managing Director at Avalon Ventures; and Ron Meeusen, Founder of Cultivian Ventures. Other investors in the round of financing include the Kansas Bioscience Authority.

SOURCE Aratana Therapeutics
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