Tag Archives: Synthetic Biology

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Bio Roundup: A Royal IPO, Akili Arrives, Orca Bio Surfaces & More

The biggest life sciences deal this week involves a company that doesn’t discover or develop drugs, or even sell them. Yet its mark is found on pharmaceutical products spanning the entire sector. Royalty Pharma (NASDAQ: RPRX) acquires the royalty rights for drugs. Most of those royalties are for products that are already approved, but the […]

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With $30M, Octant Launches Synthetic Bio Search for Multi-Target Drugs

Octant, a new drug discovery company, launched Wednesday with millions in backing from tech investors to push ahead plans to leverage advances in science and in tech—including genomics, synthetic biology, and big data computation—to map out the relationships between chemicals, drug receptors, and diseases. On Wednesday the Emeryville, CA-based startup announced it raised $30 million […]

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No More Fish or Fruit: Intrexon Turns SynBio Focus to Human Health

Intrexon has spent two decades designing and building DNA sequences for applications in healthcare, food, energy, and the environment. Going forward, the synthetic biology company will focus exclusively on human health under the name of a subsidiary whose lead cell therapies are now in early-stage clinical testing in cancer. Germantown, MD-based Intrexon (NASDAQ: XON) announced […]

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ArsenalBio Launches With $85M for “Programmable” T Cell Therapies

Cell therapies are made by tinkering with a patient’s immune cells so that they can better recognize and destroy cancer cells. These drugs give patients another treatment option for certain cancers that haven’t responded to anything else. ArsenalBio CEO Ken Drazan aims to take cell therapy even further. Arsenal is developing technology that adds capabilities […]

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Five Years After Y Combinator First Admits Biotechs, They’re Dug In

Five years ago, the big tech incubator Y Combinator started to welcome life sciences companies into its sizable startup classes, which had previously nurtured entrepreneurs in information technology almost exclusively. That opening to biotech startups in 2014 was controversial at the time. Some observers simply wondered what kind of guidance a deeply tech-focused accelerator could […]

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Meissa Scores $30M to Test Vaccine for Dangerous Respiratory Virus

No vaccine is yet available for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), which causes lung infections that, while usually mild, can be deadly for very young children. Biotech startup Meissa Vaccines, which aims to fill that treatment gap, announced today it raised $30 million to fund early-stage clinical trials for its experimental RSV vaccine. Morningside Ventures, a […]

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Motif Unveils New Name and $27.5M to Build Food Ingredients Pipeline

Plant-based meats and milks still use proteins, just not proteins that come from animals. Motif Ingredients has raised $27.5 million to build a pipeline of these animal-free protein ingredients. In addition to the new cash, Motif on Thursday also unveiled a new name: Motif FoodWorks. The Boston company says the name better connects its business […]

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Bio Roundup: Generic Drugs Graft, ASCO Ahead, ElevateBio Rises & More

Generic drugs are supposed to give consumers more choices and a counterweight to more costly branded medications. During his tenure as FDA commissioner, Scott Gottlieb often spoke about generics as a market force that could help tame climbing drug prices. But such tools only work when companies play fair. A lawsuit is now claiming that […]

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Ginkgo’s Motif Launches with $90M for Animal-Free Meat & Milk Proteins

[Updated 6:16 p.m. See below.] Plant-based foods and beverages are getting more grocery store shelf space as consumers increasingly shop for meat and milk alternatives. But these products typically carry premium prices because making proteins in a lab is still far more expensive than conventional agriculture. Motif Ingredients says it can use biotechnology and fermentation […]

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Synthorx Gets $131M in Upsized IPO for Synthetic Biology Drugs

Synthorx, which is working to develop cancer and autoimmune therapies using technology that allows it to expand the genetic alphabet, raised $131 million in an upsized IPO on Thursday. The company sold more than 11.9 million shares at $11 apiece. Nearly 1.8 million additional shares are available for its underwriters to purchase. Synthorx, headed by […]

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