RARE Daily

Dyno Therapeutics Emerges with AI Platform and Two Deals to Improve Delivery of Gene Therapies

May 11, 2020

Rare Daily Staff

Dyno Therapeutics has launched from stealth mode with two collaborations and a proprietary platform that it says enables the design of novel adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors that significantly improve upon current approaches to gene therapy and expand the scope of accessible diseases.

Along with its launch, Dyno announced two collaborations to use its AI capsid platform for the design and discovery of novel AAV capsids with improved functional properties for the development of gene therapies—with Novartis for serious eye diseases, and with Sarepta Pharmaceuticals for muscle diseases. The partners will be responsible for conducting all preclinical, development, and commercialization activities.

Under these agreements, Dyno could potentially receive more than $2 billion in upfront payments, research support, option fees, as well as pre-clinical, clinical, regulatory and sales milestones.

“At Dyno, we see a vast opportunity to expand the treatment landscape for gene therapies. The success of gene therapy relies on the ability of vectors to safely and precisely deliver a gene to the intended target cells and tissues,” said Eric Kelsic, CEO and co-founder of Dyno Therapeutics. “Our approach addresses the major limitations of naturally occurring AAV vectors and creates optimized, disease-specific vectors for gene therapies with great curative potential.”

Dyno’s CapsidMap platform builds on capsid engineering technology developed in the lab of George Church, professor of genetics at Harvard Medical School and a core faculty member at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering. Church is also a co-founder of Dyno and chairman of its Scientific Advisory Board. Dyno has an exclusive option to enter into a license agreement with Harvard University for this technology.

The CapsidMap platform applies Dyno’s proprietary artificial intelligence technology to discover and design novel AAV capsids, the cell-targeting protein shell of viral vectors. It systematically generates and then evaluates millions of new AAV variants, accelerating the identification of improved AAV vectors. CapsidMap uses advanced machine learning search algorithms, combined with high-throughput experiments generating massive quantities of in vivo data, to accelerate the creation of superior synthetic AAV capsids.

Dyno was started in late 2018 with a $9 million financing co-led by Polaris Partners and CRV.

Photo: Eric Kelsic, CEO and co-founder of Dyno Therapeutics

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