CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Sept. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Flagship Pioneering, a fully-integrated life science innovation enterprise, today unveiled Kaleido Biosciences, a clinical-stage biotechnology company developing novel chemistries that unlock the power of the human microbiome. The company has operated in stealth since its founding in 2015 by Flagship Pioneering and has built a product platform spanning drug and nutritional health opportunities for a wide range of diseases and at-risk populations. Kaleido is capitalized with a total of $65 million and today announced that Mike Bonney, the former CEO of Cubist Pharmaceuticals, is leading the company as Kaleido's CEO and chair of the board.
Kaleido was born in Flagship VentureLabs®, the institutional innovation foundry of Flagship Pioneering. Starting in 2007, at a time when the field of the human microbiome was in its infancy, Flagship began applying its process for pioneering to explore the unique biology of the trillions of microbes living on and in the human body. Through this decade-long institutional investment in microbiome science, Flagship has become a world leader in microbiome innovation and has founded several leading companies, including: Seres Therapeutics (NASDAQ: MCRB), to rebuild disrupted microbial communities; Indigo Agriculture, to restore healthy microbiomes in agricultural crops; and Evelo Biosciences, to discover rare strains within the human microbiome with privileged immune functions.
In 2013, under the leadership of Flagship Pioneering Partner Geoffrey von Maltzahn, Ph.D., a team of VentureLabs innovators and entrepreneurs started exploring ways to modulate the entire metabolic profile of the microbiome. These explorations led to the discovery that novel chemistries could dramatically change the metabolism of the microbiome, representing an extraordinary new modality to treat and prevent severe diseases. This powerful approach forms the basis of Kaleido's platform for creating, discovering and developing both novel drug chemistries and nutritional health products. Kaleido has since built a large pipeline of compounds in indication areas spanning rare genetic diseases, oncology and infectious disease. The company has generated over 3,000 days of human data and counting with its novel chemistries and is on track to surpass 20 human studies over the next 18 months.
"Since its origination in Flagship VentureLabs and under Geoffrey's leadership as founding CEO, Kaleido has grown into a team of more than 60 people and made impressive strides in pioneering the first drug chemistries to enhance and stimulate the many functions of the human microbiome," said Noubar Afeyan, Ph.D., founder, senior managing partner and CEO of Flagship Pioneering. "These chemistries will fundamentally change the way we approach the microbiome as a druggable target in the body and redefine the way we treat and prevent serious illnesses related to the microbiome. We congratulate Geoffrey for his work in co-founding Kaleido and for his successful leadership, and we look forward to the company's extraordinary future under Mike's leadership."
"Kaleido's technology has the impressive potential for both clinical and consumer products, straddling the full spectrum of microbiome health. Unlike therapies designed to inhibit microbiome function, Kaleido's technology drives the microbial metabolism to improve health throughout the body," said Mike Bonney, CEO of Kaleido. "Guided by a mission to fundamentally change the metabolic profile of the human microbiome to improve serious health conditions and diseases, we anticipate an exciting year of growth and expansion ahead."
Over the last two years, Flagship has recruited a world-class management team and a deeply-experienced board of directors. Kaleido's board is comprised of: CEO Mike Bonney as chair; Noubar Afeyan, CEO of Flagship Pioneering and co-founder of Kaleido; Geoffrey von Maltzahn, co-founder and president of Kaleido and partner at Flagship Pioneering; Brian Baynes, founding board member of Kaleido and venture partner at Flagship Pioneering; Anthony Quinn, former head of R&D at Synageva; Ronald Kahn, former president of the Joslin Diabetes Center and winner of the Wolf Prize in Medicine; Peter Barton Hutt, former chief counsel to the FDA; Robert Connelly, CEO of Axcella Health; and Jonathan McIntyre, senior vice president, PepsiCo Research & Development.
Flagship Pioneering conceives, creates, resources and develops first-in-category life sciences companies. Its institutional innovation foundry, Flagship VentureLabs®, is where Flagship's team of scientific entrepreneurs systematically evolves enterprising ideas into new fields or previously undiscovered areas of science into real-world inventions and ventures. Since its launch in 2000, the firm has applied its hypothesis-driven innovation process to originate and foster nearly 100 scientific ventures, resulting in over $20 billion in aggregate value, 500+ issued patents and more than 45 clinical trials for novel therapeutic agents.
Since inception, Flagship has capitalized its growing portfolio with over $1 billion coming from $1.75 billion of aggregate investor capital committed across five funds. The firm's current portfolio includes pioneering ventures that are transforming human health and sustainability, including: Agios Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: AGIO), Editas Medicine (NASDAQ: EDIT), Seres Therapeutics (NASDAQ: MCRB) and Syros Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: SYRS), as well as private companies, including Axcella Health, Indigo Agriculture, Moderna Therapeutics and Rubius Therapeutics. Flagship has ongoing corporate innovation alliances with several market leaders, including: AstraZeneca, the Crop Science Division of Bayer and Nestlé Health Science. To learn more about Flagship Pioneering, please visit our website: www.FlagshipPioneering.com.