Type of information: Series C financing round
Company: KSQ Therapeutics (USA - MA)
Investors: Flagship Pioneering (USA - MA) Polaris Partners (USA - MA) ARCH Venture Partners (USA - IL) Alexandria Equities (USA - CA) Baillie Gifford (UK) Cowen Healthcare Investments (USA - NY) Invus (USA - NY) Lilly Asia Ventures (China)
Amount: $80 million
Funding type: series C financing round
- KSQ Therapeutics will advance its first drug program into the clinic within the next 18 months and up to three additional oncology drug programs into IND-enabling studies. The company’s first drug program is a modified adoptive T-cell immunotherapy which has shown efficacy in multiple animal models of PD-1 resistance. In the past 12 months, utilizing its CRISPRomics platform, KSQ has initiated and advanced 12 drug discovery programs across three oncology drug categories: adoptive T-cell therapies, immuno-oncology, and targeted therapies. In addition, KSQ is continuing to expand CRISPRomics for use in other therapeutic areas, including immunology and rare diseases.
- Using the genome-scale analysis of its CRISPRomics technology, KSQ is elucidating the function that each human gene plays in a multitude of diseases providing a unique and more comprehensive understanding of disease biology. The company has now uncovered the most relevant therapeutic targets while ruling out thousands of less relevant targets at the outset. To date, KSQ has applied this high-confidence drug development approach in two areas: a tumor-genome platform for targeted cancer therapies and a T-cell genome platform for immuno-oncology monotherapies.
- With the tumor-genome platform, KSQ has interrogated the function of all 20,000 human genes across more than 600 cancer models – a massive data base which allowed the company to pinpoint the optimal therapeutic targets and patient selection biomarkers for multiple cancer types.
With the T-cell genome platform, KSQ has comprehensively mined the function of all genes in the T cell in vivo, allowing identification of adoptive T-cell enabling targets and the next generation of monotherapy targets in immuno-oncology.
- • On September 28, 2018, KSQ Therapeutics announced that the company has secured an $80 million Series C financing to advance oncology drug candidates generated from the company’s proprietary CRISPRomics™ drug discovery engine into clinical studies. The Series C financing includes new investors Baillie Gifford, Cowen Healthcare Investments, Invus, and Lilly Asia Ventures, as well as full participation from its founding investors Flagship Pioneering and Polaris Partners, as well as existing investors ARCH Venture Partners and Alexandria Equities.
Therapeutic area: Cancer - Oncology - Immunological diseases - Rare diseases