Pharmaceutical startup Bexson Biomedical confirmed Monday the closing an oversubscribed Series A funding round.

The $4.8 million raise was led by Greyhouse Partners’ Noetic Psychedelic Fund.

Noetic advisor Warren Wright also agreed to join Bexson’s board of directors, supporting the company in expanding its research programs to facilitate dosing and delivery technologies for a variety of therapies beyond ketamine.  

According to management, the funds will allow the company to develop wearable ketamine technology and an accompanying device for pain management.

Unlike other companies focused on psychedelics for the treatment of mental health issues, Bexson is betting on “the neurological connection between the mind and the body.”

Wright believes “we will continue to discover a wellspring of potential use-cases for these powerful compounds” beyond mental health.

“In many cases, however, the delivery technology and dosing capabilities do not yet exist to optimize safety and effective administration in a traditional healthcare delivery model,” Wright told Benzinga. “A ketamine-based at-home alternative to opioids is a massive addressable market in its own right.  And I believe Bexson has the talent and the foresight to provide highly-marketable solutions for a wide range of therapies. I look forward to supporting them as a member of their Board of Directors.”

Getting Through The FDA

Elaborating on the capital raise, Bexson’s co-founder and CEO Gregg Peterson said the money will support the company through the FDA approval process for its proprietary ketamine formulation, BB106, as well as the development of a wearable delivery device, to be produced in tandem with Italian medical device manufacturer, Stevanato Group.

The device is designed to enable dynamic and convenient subcutaneous delivery for patients, compared to current ketamine infusions, which are cost-prohibitive and only available through an in-office procedure.

In addition, a portion of Bexson’s new funds will be utilized for the development of unique compounds, similar to ketamine, targeting the NMDA receptor with the intention of creating additional pain management and central nervous system therapies.

Leading the discovery initiatives will be Dr. Jeff Becker, Bexson’s Chief Scientific Officer and one of the world’s first psychiatrists to use ketamine for clinical depression, along with Dr. Jason Wallach, who is a top expert in psychopharmacology and, specifically, NMDA receptor antagonists.

“Our investor partners recognize the valuable market opportunity, as well as the social benefit, an effective non-opioid therapy will offer,” Peterson said. “Tens of thousands of lives are lost to the opioid epidemic every year. With a viable, FDA-approved alternative to opioid-based pain meds, we could finally move the needle on addiction, as well as the wider economic impact of the opioid crisis.”