Engine Biosciences Announces $ 43 Million Series to Crack Genetic Codes of New Drugs Using Machine Learning and Next-Generation Combinatorial Genetics
SINGAPORE AND SAN CARLOS, Calif .– (BUSINESS WIRE) – Engine Biosciences (“Engine”) today announced the successful completion of a $ 43 million oversubscribed Series A funding round. Engine identifies errors in the complex genetic codes of diseases, correcting them with precise therapeutic solutions. This tour was led by Polaris Partners and also included new investors Invus and one of the world’s leading institutional investors, based in Singapore. Existing investors also participated in Series A, which included 6 Dimensions Capital, WuXi AppTec, DHVC, EDBI, Baidu Ventures, Vectr Ventures, Goodman Capital, WI Harper and Nest.Bio. Amy Schulman, Managing Partner at Polaris Partners, has joined the Board of Engine Biosciences. Engine has now raised $ 53 million to date, including $ 10 million in a 2018 funding round.
Located in Singapore and Silicon Valley, Engine operates at the intersection of data science, machine learning, high-throughput biology experimentation, combinatorial genetics, chemistry and the discovery of drugs. Engine’s technologies allow researchers and drug developers to discover gene interactions and biological networks underlying disease orders of magnitude faster and more cost-effective than conventional methods. In addition, the company generates important information for precision medicine applications.
“Many revolutionary tools for editing, programming and modulating biology have emerged and matured in recent years. The fundamental question remains whether we know the disease-causing errors in the genetic code of biology to direct these tools, including therapeutics, ”said Jeffrey Lu, co-founder and CEO of Engine Biosciences. “We are honored that this preeminent group of life science and technology investors have recognized the progress of our team and support our mission to unleash new drugs by deciphering biology.”
Engine has already advanced its innovative biology discoveries in proprietary small molecule inhibitor and drug discovery programs. It will use the new funds to expand its portfolio of precision oncology therapies, prepare for its first clinical programs and evolve its proprietary technology platform.
“The past year has reinforced the importance of rapid innovation and adaptation,” said Amy Schulman of Polaris Partners. “Engine’s distinct combination of biology, technology and drug discovery, along with its global perspective, may well allow the company to be uniquely capable of realizing the promise of artificial intelligence in discovery. of drugs and to fight a wide variety of diseases. We are delighted to be part of this next step with the team. ”
Initial targets of the disease
Engine carried out several large-scale computer and experimental cycles regarding genetic interactions and their relevance to several cancers, which led to new discoveries subsequently validated. Engine’s growing and progressive pipeline of targeted therapies for genetically defined patient populations has shown promise in the treatment of cancers of the liver, ovaries, colorectal and breast, representing major areas of unmet medical need and, at the same time, total, about 2.5 million deaths each year.
Through collaborations, Engine has also demonstrated the applicability of its platform in other areas of disease and will continue to enable new therapies for more patients.
“We believe that Engine’s AI-enabled technology platform has the potential to uncover new biological targets and pathogenic links between known targets,” said Leon Chen, CEO and founding partner of 6 Dimensions Capital. “Given the industry’s enormous need for drug targets tailored to the right patients and Engine’s unique ability to find them, we continue to be excited about Engine’s potential to fuel new drugs.”
How it works: NetMAPPR and CombiGEM
Two scientific innovations are at the heart of Engine Biosciences: NetMAPPR and CombiGEM. NetMAPPR is Engine’s biological research platform, revealing combinations of genes and drug targets that are integral to disease. Using combinatorial CRISPR, CombiGEM makes it possible to experimentally confirm how genes and gene combinations are linked to disease in a supercharged manner.
Engine designed NetMAPPR to operate on predictive-test-learning cycles and scale for many drug research and discovery programs. Advanced computational tools tap into vast sets of patient and disease data and analyze the vast universe of millions to billions of genetic interactions, making predictions on the most critical biologies for drugs. Engine uses its patented CombiGEM technology to experimentally test hundreds of thousands of genetic interactions in diseased cells, breaking down bottlenecks in validation and data generation. Data from well-controlled experiments improves Engine’s machine learning algorithms, while high-ranking genes are prioritized for drug discovery and development.
Compared to conventional approaches that face human limitations and less efficient and less precise experimental systems and therefore cover tiny slices of biology, NetMAPPR seeks much larger scopes of the complex architecture of biology at faster speeds. high, unleashing more new therapeutic opportunities.
About Engine Biosciences
Engine Biosciences is a Singapore, Silicon Valley-based company deciphering complex biology to unleash many high-impact drugs. Our proprietary NetMAPPR platform integrates data science and machine learning, high throughput biological experiments using our patented CombiGEM combinatorial genetics system, computational and wet lab chemistry, and drug discovery. We systematically analyze biological networks comprising millions to billions of gene interactions at a rate and scale greater than what is conventionally possible, resulting in promising drug targets for specific patient populations. Led by drug discovery and technology industry veterans and scientific pioneers, we are expanding our growing portfolio of precision oncology therapies and working with partners to broaden our impact. For more information, please visit www.enginebio.com