CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Moderna Therapeutics, the pioneer in developing messenger RNA (mRNA) Therapeutics™, a revolutionary new treatment modality to enable the in vivo production of therapeutic proteins, announced today the completion of a new financing round, raising $110 million. In aggregate, Moderna has secured more than $415 million in financing and partnerships to date from the pharmaceutical and government sectors, as well as from private investors led by founding investor Flagship Ventures.
"We are pleased with the confidence and enthusiasm that our investors continue to demonstrate by providing the resources to advance Moderna's clinical development platform," said Stephane Bancel, president and founding CEO of Moderna. "With their support, and $340 million in the bank and available now, we are working hard to deliver on the promise of messenger RNA Therapeutics™ to provide transformative medicines for patients."
This round of financing underscores a successful and significant year for Moderna. Emerging from stealth mode in December 2012, the company has garnered the attention of the scientific community, and attracted growing interest in its mRNA platform in 2013 as demonstrated by:
- The completion of one of the biggest pre-clinical partnerships in biotech history with AstraZeneca, which made an upfront payment of $240M for the right to 40 drug options in cardiovascular, metabolic diseases and oncology
- The publication in Nature Biotechnology of the first peer-reviewed, scientific article describing the ability of messenger RNA Therapeutics™ to stimulate in vivo production of human proteins to achieve a long-term therapeutic effect
- Receipt of a grant of up to $25M from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) for the development of therapies to defend against infectious diseases and engineered biological threats
- Recruitment of a dozen biotech industry veterans
"Given the potential of Moderna's technology to transform the treatment of a wide range of diseases, we have made the strategic decision to remain private at this time, even in the face of a favorable public market environment for biotech IPOs," added Bancel. "The significant support we have received from our investor base and partners will enable us to strike the right balance between urgency and care to build a durable scientific platform and propel the field forward, without the short-term distractions that can side-track a young public company from its mission."
About Moderna Therapeutics
Moderna is pioneering messenger RNA Therapeutics™, an entirely new in vivo drug modality that produces human proteins or antibodies inside patient cells, which are in turn active intracellularly or secreted. This breakthrough platform addresses currently undruggable targets and offers a superior alternative to existing drug modalities for a wide range of disease conditions. Moderna has developed a broad intellectual property estate, including more than 200 patent applications with more than 10,000 claims ranging from novel nucleotide chemistries to specific drug compositions. The company plans to develop and commercialize its innovative mRNA drugs—initially for rare diseases and oncology—while partnering drug candidates in other therapeutic areas in order to rapidly deliver this innovation to patients. Moderna is a privately held company based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Visit www.modernatx.com to learn more.
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SOURCE Moderna Therapeutics