News Releases
Dec. 15 2023

Restore Vision Completes Series A Round Financing to Accelerate Global Development

Restore Vision Inc., a biopharmaceutical company in Japan aiming to fast-track the development of a treatment to restore vision through gene therapy, announced today that it has secured a total of 1.9 billion JPY in Series A round financing after its extension round of the Series A financing announced in June 2023 (“Extension Round Funding”) with four new investors: OSAKA University Venture Capital Co., Ltd., JIC Venture Growth Investments Co., Ltd., Japan Science and Technology Agency, and Kyoto University Innovation Capital Co., Ltd. Closing this Extension Round Funding brings the company’s total funding to 2.2 billion yen (equity funding only). 

This Extension Round Funding will primarily be allocated for global development of RV-001, the lead program in the pipeline, for research and development expenses including the second program in the pipeline and for our management control system as well as expansion of our team.

Restore Vision has also been selected as a pharmaceutical startup subsidized by the “Strengthening Program for Pharmaceutical Startup Ecosystem” (“Project”) implemented by the Agency for Medical Research and Development (AMED). Startups adopted for the Project are eligible to receive a subsidy of up to double the amount invested by Registered VCs (venture capital companies selected and accredited by AMED for the Project). By utilizing this Project and adding to the investment by four Registered VCs, including the leading investor, Remiges Ventures, Restore Vision has secured development fundings on a multibillion-yen scale. This will further bolster our preparation for clinical studies globally.

About the Businesses Strengthening the Pharmaceutical Startup Ecosystem (AMED)
For details on the Project, visit the following links:
Businesses Strengthening the Pharmaceutical Startup Ecosystem

“Development of gene-agnostic optogenetic treatments targeting inherited retinal diseases is garnering more global attention each year, offering hope to patients awaiting speedy arrival of a cure,” says Yusaku Katada, CEO of Restore Vision. “Taking advantage of the regulatory landscape in Japan, we are building a strong and agile team to expand our operations internationally after our first-in-human study in Japan in preparation to begin in 2024. We are extremely grateful for this funding led by a therapeutics-focused global VC Remiges Ventures, among these eight investors who have confidence in our technology and resonate with our vision. This has been made possible by our long-standing relationship with their management even before the inception of our company. We are committed to accelerating the development of the program globally, and bringing our innovative science and technology to patients worldwide as soon as possible.”

About our product RV‑001
RV-001 is the lead gene therapy product in the pipeline, using adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors with the unique functional gene coding ‘Chimeric Rhodopsin’ which is a protein-based optical sensor. It is a treatment that can restore vision in patients blinded by photoreceptor loss. We take a simple and minimally invasive approach, intravitreal injection, to deliver our therapeutic gene that will express chimeric rhodopsin in the remaining interneurons, enabling the patient to see again. Many genetic retinal disorders have unmet medical needs of effective prevention and treatment: A good example is retinitis pigmentosa, the main target disease of RV-001, which is a designated intractable disease and the 2nd leading cause of blindness in Japan that afflicts millions of patients and families globally. RV-001 is moving well toward pre-clinical development, including formulations, and on to clinical trials very soon. Restore Vision is committed to bring the world’s first vision restoration gene therapy with which patients can see the long-awaited light at the end of their tunnel.

About Restore Vision
Restore Vision Inc. is a startup company founded in November 2016, based on promising results of a joint research between associate professor Toshihide Kurihara at Keio University School of Medicine and professor Hideki Kandori at Nagoya Institute of Technology to develop a visual restoration gene therapy for blindness caused by retinal disorders, using a clinical application of optogenetics technology. Restore Vision’s mission is to deliver therapies at light speed to patients waiting for an effective treatment and end blindness by making cutting-edge gene therapy technology available to all.

[Company Overview]
Restore Vision Inc.
Yusaku Katada, CEO
Established November 14, 2016
Toranomon Hills Business Tower 15F, 1-17-1 Toranomon, Minato-ku, Tokyo Japan

Restore Vision Inc. / COO Hikaru Miyazaki