Pandemic forces Proteus into bankruptcy

Proteus Digital Health has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, noting that its efforts to raise money or sell the company fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Redwood City, Calif.-based company missed a $100 million funding target in December. Once valued at $1.5 billion, Proteus previously raised $420 million from investors including Novartis Venture Fund and Kaiser Permanente Ventures, according to an April report by Forbes.

Proteus’ products combine oral medications with an ingestible sensor. The sensor-embedded pill was approved by the FDA in November 2017. Otsuka Pharmaceutical (TYO:4578) and Proteus developed the Abilify MyCite pill to treat schizophrenia, manic and mixed episodes linked with bipolar I disorder and depression in adults. Otsuka and Proteus signed an $88 million deal in 2018 in which Proteus would help Otsuka develop more digital medicines while commercializing the smart pill technology.

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