RARE Daily

EdiGene Raises $62 Million to Advance and Scale Up Clinical Translation of Gene Editing Technologies

April 21, 2021

Rare Daily Staff

Chinese biotech EdiGene raised approximately $62 million (RMB 400 million) in a series B-plus financing round to advancer its pipeline of gene editing therapeutics into clinics and to scale up its business operation.

The company, which also has an office in the United States, had previously completed a series B financing of approximately $67 million in October 2020. Loyal Valley Capital led the round with participation by new investors BioTrack Capital and Sherpa Healthcare Partners, along with continued support by existing investors IDG Capital, Lilly Asia Venture, 3H Health Investment, Huagai Capital, Sequoia Capital China, Alwin Capital and Kunlun Capital.

EdiGene has established four gene editing-based platforms and is advancing its early-stage programs into clinical development for patients with genetic diseases and cancer. The platforms are ex vivo genome-editing platforms for hematopoietic stem cells and T cells and an in vivo therapeutic platform based on RNA base editing, and high-throughput genome-editing screening to discover novel targeted therapies.

The company’s preclinical pipeline includes programs for β-thalassemia, rare metabolic and neuromuscular diseases, and hematologic and solid tumor cancers. In addition, EdiGene launched GMP manufacturing facility in 2018 in Guangdong Province.

“The company is speeding up portfolio advancement and scaling up business footprints,” said Dong Wei, CEO of EdiGene. “Adding to our existing Beijing R&D center and Guangzhou Clinical Application Center, we have opened our Clinical Development Office in Beijing, Business Development Office in Shanghai and launched an R&D center in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The round enables us to continue our efforts in translating gene-editing technologies into therapeutics and further grow the company in terms of scale, global competitiveness and business development. With these efforts, we strive to bring innovative therapies to patients in need sooner.”

In January 2021, the Center for Drug Evaluation of China National Medical Products Administration approved EdiGene’s Investigational New Drug application for ET-01, an experimental CRISPR/Cas 9 gene-editing therapy for patients with transfusion dependent β-thalassemia. It marks the first gene-editing therapy and the first hematopoietic stem cell therapy IND application approval in China. The Company is preparing to initiate ET-01’s phase I clinical trial, and is advancing other assets including an allogeneic CAR-T therapy, in vivo therapies based on RNA base editing technology, as well as novel targeted therapies discovered through high-throughput genome-editing screening.

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