Creyon Bio secures $40M in financing led by DCVC Bio and Lux Capital
Creyon’s drug development platform creates purpose-built data sets orders of magnitude more efficient than current approaches
Proprietary machine learning models reveal design rules and engineering principles for optimal oligonucleotide-based medicines, ideal for treating rare or common diseases
SAN DIEGO and RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC, March 8, 2022 – Creyon Bio, Inc. (“Creyon Bio”), a drug development company engineering RNA-based medicines and their components (oligonucleotide-based medicines or OBMs) with predictable safety and efficacy profiles, launched today with the goal of making precision medicines on demand a real possibility for populations ranging from one patient to millions. Creyon Bio creates proprietary, purpose-built datasets that inform powerful machine learning models, rapidly identifying the design rules and engineering principles for safe and effective OBMs.
Knowledge and understanding of the genetic and molecular causes of disease are rapidly expanding. OBMs are potentially ideal for precision medicine because they directly target these genetic and molecular causes. Creating new OBM therapeutics has been slow and expensive. The full potential of this class of drugs has yet to be realized, both for rare and common diseases. As the diagnostic odyssey ends for more and more patients, Creyon Bio is working to ensure novel OBM therapeutics are rapidly available.
“At Creyon Bio, we have built the company from the ground up to engineer OBMs, rejecting the idea that they need to be discovered through trial-and-error screening. Our mission is to design and offer predictably safe and effective options for patients with any disease amenable to OBM therapies,” said Chris Hart, Ph.D., Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer and President of Creyon Bio. “No matter how rare or common their condition, no matter the size of the patient population, we believe that the Creyon Platform is creating a fast, efficient, and equitable path to engineering new medicines for patients.”
Creyon Bio uses advanced machine learning and artificial intelligence along with optimal purpose-built datasets to connect foundational biophysical properties of OBM chemistry and sequence with accurate predictive models of safety and efficacy. Creyon Bio’s purpose-built datasets are orders-of-magnitude more efficient than using retrospective or ad-hoc screening data for building predictive models. This allows Creyon Bio to develop models to engineer optimal OBMs across a broad range of molecular modalities from single-stranded antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) that reduce gene expression levels or change splicing events, to small interfering RNA (siRNA), to DNA and RNA editing systems, to even targeting aptamers. The Creyon Platform creates unprecedented efficiency and will change how precision medicines are created for patients.
“At Creyon Bio, we believe it is time to use modern technologies and methods to engineer safe and effective therapies,” said Swagatam Mukhopadhyay, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer at Creyon Bio. “Our unique datasets are optimized for efficiently building generalizable machine learning models, and we constantly refine our models through active learning. The Creyon Platform ultimately allows us to create safe and effective OBMs with exceptional efficiency, building a world where there is no gap between diagnosis and treatment.”
Creyon Bio has secured more than $40 million in seed and Series A financing led by DCVC Bio and Lux Capital. Other investors include Casdin Capital, Alexandria Venture Investments, and BioBrit. The funding supports continued optimization of the Creyon Platform, expanding the team, and laying the foundations for a diverse internal pipeline.
The Creyon Bio team is led by an interdisciplinary group of scientists and engineers with deep expertise in OBM development and machine learning:
● Chris Hart, Ph.D., Co-founder, Chief Executive Officer & President
● Swagatam Mukhopadhyay, Ph.D., Co-founder, Chief Scientific Officer
● Nathan Billings, Ph.D., Chief Strategy Officer
● Monica McArthur, Ph.D., Chief Technology Officer
In addition to Hart and Mukhopadhyay, Creyon’s Board of Directors includes Kiersten Stead, Ph.D., DCVC Bio; Zavain Dar, Lux Capital; and Dennis Langer, M.D., J.D., an independent board member.
“With a team that includes chemists, biologists, and computational scientists, Creyon Bio’s cross-disciplinary approach breaks down silos to tackle the drug design problem from all angles and create an efficient path to patient impact,” said Zavain Dar, Lux Capital.
“Creyon Bio’s groundbreaking approach and long-term planning, including partnerships with advocates and policymakers, is poised to revolutionize treatments for patients of rare disease and likely many common diseases as well,” said Kiersten Stead, Ph.D., DCVC Bio. “We are excited to work with the team to realize the full potential of engineering OBMs.”
About Creyon Bio, Inc.
Creyon Bio is a pre-clinical stage company reimagining drug development as it should be, using a data-first approach for generating uniquely powerful datasets and developing machine learning models to uncover the engineering principles that make precision oligonucleotide-based medicines possible for patient populations of all sizes. To learn more, visit creyonbio.com.
Verge Scientific Communications