Omega Raises $126 Million to Advance Epigenomic Programming Pipeline and Platform
March 30, 2021
Rare Daily Staff
Omega Therapeutics said it closed an upsized $126 million series C financing to support advancing its novel epigenomic controllers into first-in-human clinical trials in oncology, inflammation, autoimmune, metabolic, and rare genetic diseases.
Invus, Fidelity Management & Research Company, funds and accounts managed by BlackRock, Cowen, Point72, Logos Capital, and Mirae Asset Capital joined company founder and principal backer Flagship Pioneering in the financing, which included other undisclosed new and returning institutional investors. This financing brings the total raised by Omega to more than $210 million since its founding in 2017.
Omega aims to deliver safe and effective therapies that modulate gene expression without altering a patient’s DNA. Proceeds from the financing will be used to support the advancement of Omega’s lead epigenomic controller candidate, OTX-2002, and to advance the next wave of novel pipeline therapeutics that it expects to be generated by the company’s proprietary Omega Epigenomic Programming platform. The proceeds will also be used to continue developing the Omega Epigenomic Programming platform and to build a manufacturing footprint.
“This financing enables us to advance OTX-2002 through the required IND-enabling studies with the goal of filing an IND and entering the clinic thereafter,” said Mahesh Karande, president and CEO of Omega Therapeutics. “It also allows us to continue unlocking the potential of our Omega Epigenomic Programming platform where we expect to be unveiling several additional drug candidates addressing a wide range of high unmet need diseases during 2021.”
Omega’s epigenomic programming platform is focused on selectively directing the human genome to treat and cure disease by precisely controlling genomic expression without altering native nucleic acid sequences. The company’s platform and knowledge base identifies Insulated Genomic Domains (IGDs) and their biological functions in both healthy and diseased states across cell types.
IGDs naturally function as the fundamental regulators of the human genome and can be modulated to up- or down-regulate single or multiple genes simultaneously. These scientific and product insights drive the discovery and development of disease-specific genomic modulators called Epigenomic Controllers, which are engineered to precisely tune genomic activity to desired therapeutic levels with high targeting specificity and durability of effect.
In January 2021, Omega unveiled its first programmable epigenetic medicine, OTX-2002, which is engineered to specifically control c-myc (MYC) oncogene expression. OTX-2002 potently down-regulated MYC expression in preclinical models of hepatocellular carcinoma, a result that the company said has historically eluded many prior attempts and therapeutic approaches. The Company is currently advancing OTX-2002 into Investigational New Drug-enabling studies. Omega plans to nominate additional development candidates in 2021, with an initial focus on regenerative medicine, inflammatory diseases, acute respiratory distress syndrome associated with COVID-19, alopecia, neutrophilic dermatoses, non-small cell lung cancer, and an additional oncogene target.
Photo: Mahesh Karande, president and CEO of Omega Therapeutics
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