5AM incubator spinout Homology raises $43.5M

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Gene editing company Homology Medicines Inc. spun out of 5AM Ventures’ incubator with a $43.5 million series A round led by 5AM and Arch Venture Partners. Temasek, Deerfield and Arch Overage Fund also participated.

Homology’s platform uses adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors derived from CD34+ hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) to induce gene editing through homologous recombination. The newco plans to use the platform for therapeutic in vivo gene editing, with an initial focus on rare monogenic diseases including hemoglobinopathies, inborn errors of metabolism and CNS disorders.

Homology has an exclusive, worldwide license to the platform and vectors from the lab of Saswati Chatterjee, the company’s scientific founder and a professor of virology at the Beckman Research Institute of City of Hope. The company’s management team includes President and CEO Arthur Tzianabos, formerly president and CSO of OvaScience Inc. (NASDAQ:OVAS); COO Sam Rasty, who was VP and head of new products in the rare diseases business unit of Shire plc (LSE:SHP; NASDAQ:SHPG); and CSO Albert Seymour, who was Shire’s SVP and global head of research and nonclinical development. 5AM’s Kush Parmar and Arch’s Steven Gillis joined Homology’s board.

Adapted from BioCentury