Athyrium was formed in December 2008 by Jeffrey A. Ferrell.
Mr. Ferrell had previously managed the life sciences investment business of Global Trading Strategies, a large principal investment business at Lehman Brothers. The team managed capital in two distinct strategies: structured credit and an equity strategy with a private equity approach to public market investing. After the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers, Athyrium was formed to pursue a similar strategy.
Athyrium partnered with NB Alternatives (Neuberger Berman) in early 2009 to explore making structured investments in the life sciences sector and formed NB Athyrium LLC to pursue these investments. NB Alternatives had previously been part of Lehman Brothers. Over time the relationship expanded to include a number of accounts advised by NB Alternatives and certain third party investors.
In February 2010, NB Athyrium acquired certain illiquid assets from Pequot as the hedge fund was winding down operations.
In early 2011, Athyrium further expanded its partnership with NB Alternatives to cover the Athyrium Opportunities Fund. In April 2013, Athyrium announced the final closing of the Athyrium Opportunities Fund at $507 million of total commitments.
In May 2015, Athyrium announced the closing of a successor fund, Athyrium Opportunities Fund II, with over $1.2 billion of committed capital.
In November 2017, Athyrium announced the closing of a successor fund, Athyrium Opportunities Fund III, with over $2.0 billion of committed capital.
In December 2022, Athyrium announced the closing of a successor fund, Athyrium Opportunities Fund IV, with $1.29 billion of committed capital.