UK-pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has joined with France-based venture capital investment firm Kurma Life Sciences Partners, bpifrance (France’s public investment bank), Idinvest Partners and investment fund New Enterprise Associates to launch Kurma Biofund II: The Orphan Initiative.  The first closing of the fund has reached €44m ($58.2m) out of a target total of €75m ($99.3m).

The fund will invest in treatments and innovations within the field of rare diseases, of which there are 6000 – 7000, affecting 1 in 2000 people or fewer, according to GSK.

Mouncef Slaoui, director of research and development at GSK, said: “The participation of GSK in the Kurma Biofund II continues our long term commitment to meeting the needs of patients suffering rare diseases.”

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