Avidity Biosciences, a La Jolla, CA-based developer of An antibody-siRNA Conjugate (ASC) platform, completed a $16m Series B financing.
The round includes investment of $10m in new capital and conversion of $6m in convertible debt. Takeda Pharmaceuticals, through its venture group, led the Series B, and both new and existing investors participated, including Alethea Capital, Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Brace Pharma, EcoR1 Capital, F-Prime Capital, Moore Venture Partners and Tavistock Life Sciences. In connection with the financing, Avidity Biosciences announced that Michael Martin, Ph.D., global head of Takeda Ventures Inc., and Todd Brady, director of finance and investments of Brace Pharma Capital, will join its board of directors. Tony Hsu, founder and chief investment officer of Alethea Capital, will also join the board as a non-voting member.
The company intends to use the funds to develop its Antibody-siRNA Conjugate (ASC) platform.
Led by Troy Wilson, Ph.D., J.D., president and chief executive officer, Avidity Biosciences is advancing ASCs that link a monoclonal antibody—designed against a specific molecular target—with a siRNA therapeutic payload. In preclinical models, ASCs have shown potential to break down messenger RNA levels in multiple important cell types and tissues, including tumor, muscle, heart, lung, liver and B cells.
In addition, ASCs have drug-like properties comparable to antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates.