PIF’s two most recent investments focus on novel gene therapies. Akouos Inc. is targeting monogenic hearing loss disorders while SwanBio Therapeutics is tackling neuro- degenerative diseases. Akouos was sourced from the Vandenberghe Lab at Mass Eye and Ear (“MEE”), and marks not only the first hearing-loss investment but also the first deal with our new merger partner MEE. SwanBio is based in the UK and represents our first deal with Syncona Partners, an established leader in gene therapy affiliated with The Welcome Trust.
Akouos Raises $7M Series Seed
Akouos is building the leading inner ear gene therapy company. The core technology was invented at Mass Eye and Ear , based on novel ancestral gene therapy vectors developed by Dr. Luk Vandenberghe. Building upon an existing Anc-AAV partnership between MEE and Lonza, Akouos plans to accelerate AAV gene therapy development for hearing and balance disorders.
SwanBio Raises $25M Series A
Based on pioneering work from Florian Eichler, a rare disease expert and Prof. of Neurology at MGH, SwanBio is seeking to develop a gene therapy treatment for a specific rare neurological disorder, with potential to broaden its offering into other gene therapy programs. SwanBio’s efforts on its lead program are currently at the preclinical stage.