Rare Daily Staff
Deep Genomics, which uses AI and machine learning to program and prioritize RNA therapeutics for genetic diseases, closed $180 million in a series C financing.
SoftBank Vision Fund 2 led the financing with participation from new investors Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board, Fidelity Management & Research Company, and Alexandria Venture Investments. Existing investors Amplitude Ventures, Khosla Ventures, Magnetic Ventures, and True Ventures also participated in the financing.
“This financing further validates the significant advances in our AI discovery platform and growth of our proprietary preclinical pipeline,” said Brendan Frey, founder and CEO of Deep Genomics.
Since its founding in 2015, Deep Genomics has built a suite of predictive systems known as the AI Workbench, which has made billions of predictions across the entire human genome, for millions of genetic variants, and hundreds of millions of novel compounds. This level of productivity has not been possible using traditional non-AI approaches.
“RNA therapeutics are a digital sequence of nucleotides, which means medicines have become digital information. Our AI Workbench enables us to precisely program RNA therapeutics, much like computer code, to perform a wide range of functions,” said Frey. “This AI Workbench, paired with terabytes of proprietary data, enables us to tackle the enormous complexity of RNA biology and identify novel targets, mechanisms, and RNA therapeutics, which cannot be found without AI. We believe this will have a tremendous positive impact on patients’ lives.”
Deep Genomics will use the funding to advance its first 10 AI-discovered programs, including experimental therapies for the rare genetic disorders Wilson disease, Niemann-Pick Disease Type C, and frontotemporal dementia, toward the clinic, expand the AI Workbench, and scale its pipeline to 30 programs.
The company will embark on a large-scale data generation effort across 100 genes to identify novel targets, mechanisms, and preclinical programs. In addition, the company plans to advance four programs into the clinic by 2023, and further establish its clinical development capabilities. In parallel, Deep Genomics will continue to leverage partnerships with biopharmaceutical companies to expand its clinical development capacity.
“The potential to identify novel targets and treat genetic diseases with programmable RNA therapeutics is one of the most significant opportunities in biotech,” said Deep Nishar, senior managing partner at SoftBank Investment Advisers. “We believe Deep Genomics has built one of the most sophisticated and promising AI systems to create portfolios of novel medicines to treat genetic diseases.”
In conjunction with the financing, Elena Viboch, investment director at SoftBank Investment Advisers, will join Deep Genomics’ Board of Directors.
Photo: Brendan Frey, founder and CEO of Deep Genomics