ATP Unveils Non-Viral Gene Therapy Innovator Intergalactic Therapeutics with $75 Million in Series A Funding
NEW YORK and BOSTON, Mass., October 7, 2021/PR NEWSWIRE/ – ATP, a leader in life sciences venture capital, today debuted Intergalactic Therapeutics, a non-viral gene therapy platform led by a top management team and funded with $75 million in Series A financing from ATP. Intergalactic’s breakthrough approach to non-viral gene therapy deploys two proprietary technologies: 1) C3DNA, covalently closed and circular DNA that does not integrate into the genome or lead to adverse immune reactions, permits large gene cargoes, and relies on a cell-free manufacturing process; and 2) COMET®, a clinically advanced, pulsed electric field focal gene therapy delivery system.
“Because viral-based gene therapies have technical and clinical limitations, we at ATP created Intergalactic to expand the universe of what is possible in gene therapy,” said Michael Ehlers, M.D., Ph.D., founder and Chief Executive Officer of Intergalactic and Chief Scientific Officer and Venture Partner at ATP. “With our C3DNA format, we can express large genes; we can express multiple genes; we have more capacity, allowing us to design modifications that can program and control gene expression; by mimicking host chromatin, we can achieve persistence of expression with the first dose; and we can re-dose. In addition, C3DNA is highly suitable for multiple advanced delivery technologies, including our COMET® delivery system that enables focal gene therapy precisely where it is needed. The Intergalactic team is advancing programs to realize the vast potential of this new platform to treat many diseases that were beyond the reach of gene therapy, until now.”
“ATP forms companies to scale the scientific platforms that we hope will define the future of medicine, and our model gives us the flexibility to translate science to therapeutics,” said Seth Harrison, M.D., founder and Managing Partner of ATP. “We paired a next-generation synthetic DNA construct with a cutting-edge medical technology that had also emerged in our portfolio, and quickly saw that this combination had the potential to be revolutionary. Thus, Intergalactic was born.”
ATP founded Intergalactic Therapeutics in 2020; the company is headquartered in Boston. Intergalactic is developing non-viral gene therapies in ophthalmology, oncology, and respiratory diseases. Potential applications of its technology platform in other areas include cardiology, hepatology, CNS, and musculoskeletal disorders.
To produce C3DNA, Intergalactic has developed a proprietary cell-free manufacturing process that avoids potential safety liabilities of more conventional gene therapy technologies and enables more patient doses to be made across more disease types.
Intergalactic recently entered into a five-year strategic partnership with Resilience, a differentiated provider of manufacturing solutions for next-generation medicines including cell and gene therapies, under which Resilience will provide cGMP capacity and resources to manufacture C3DNA products for Intergalactic’s first in human clinical trials, and process and analytical development support to advance Intergalactic’s novel cell-free manufacturing.
In addition to Dr. Ehlers, the Intergalactic Therapeutics leadership team includes:
José Lora, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer—formerly Chief Scientific Officer of non-viral gene therapy company enGene and Vice President of Research at synthetic biology therapeutics company Synlogic, and co-author of numerous publications in journals including PNAS, Journal of Experimental Medicine, Nature, Nature Immunology, Nature Communications, and Nature Reviews.
Eileen Higham, Ph.D., Senior Vice President, Technical Operations—formerly Vice President, Head of Analytical and Process Development at Sana Biotechnology; Head of Analytical & Process Development at Juno Therapeutics (Celgene/Bristol Myers Squibb); and Product Development Team Leader for Adoptive Cellular Therapy at MedImmune (AstraZeneca).
Vincent Hennemand, Chief Operating Officer—formerly Head of Immuno-Inflammation and Senior Vice President of Strategy, Finance, Corporate and Business Development at Akili Interactive; Vice President of Strategy, Corporate Development and Operations at PureTech Health; Principal at Sanofi Genzyme Venture; and Chief of Staff to Sanofi’s President of Global R&D.
Robert Farra, Chief Engineer—formerly Chief Executive Officer of CeQur, maker of a wearable insulin patch; President of Microchips, an MIT startup developing implantable drug delivery devices and sensors; and Vice President of Engineering and Manufacturing for ventricular assist device company Abiomed.
Founded in 1999, ATP is a leader in life sciences venture capital, with $2.65 billion in committed capital and offices in New York, London, San Francisco, and Cambridge, MA. ATP creates companies starting at various stages, from pre-IP ideas to asset spinouts, investing in them from seed stage through IPO and beyond. The core of ATP’s strategy is providing flexible capital and access to a world-class team of venture partners and EIRs, to build sustainable, research-driven enterprises that deliver therapeutics to improve human lives. For more information, visit www.appletreepartners.com.
About Intergalactic Therapeutics
Intergalactic Therapeutics, an ATP company, is revolutionizing gene therapies with a novel non-viral platform comprised of its versatile synthetic and episomal C3DNA (covalently closed and circular DNA) molecules; a customized approach to focal therapeutic delivery using its lead delivery technology, the COMET® pulsed electric field system; and a proprietary cell-free manufacturing process invented to make gene therapy safer and more accessible for patients. With programs in ophthalmology, oncology, respiratory diseases, and expansion areas including CNS, renal, and musculoskeletal, Intergalactic Therapeutics is dedicated to transforming genetic medicine. For more information, visit www.intergalactictx.com.
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