CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dewpoint Therapeutics, a company translating the emerging area of biomolecular condensates into drug discovery, launched today with a $60 million Series A. Founding investor Polaris Partners led the equity round and was joined by Samsara BioCapital, 6 Dimensions Capital, EcoR1 Capital, Alexandria Venture Investments, and Leaps by Bayer.
Dewpoint is harnessing recent insights into biomolecular condensates elucidated by founders Anthony Hyman of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden and Richard Young of the Whitehead Institute with the goal to uncover treatments for the toughest diseases. Biomolecular condensates have long been known but historically understudied because they are difficult to analyze with traditional drug discovery methods like protein crystallography and biochemical activity assays. Condensates are well-defined, membrane-less organelles found inside cells that take advantage of intrinsically disordered regions of proteins to organize certain proteins and nucleic acids in cells, bringing them together in high concentrations to significantly enhance the chemical reactions critical for the cells’ lives. Emerging understanding of condensates offers new insights into cellular function and disease that have not been considered by scientists and drug developers.
“We are thrilled to have the backing of a world-class syndicate, an experienced team, and an interdisciplinary group of scientific advisors to tackle the important work of exploiting this long-overlooked arena of biology for drug discovery in areas of highest unmet medical need,” said Amir Nashat, managing partner of Polaris Partners and CEO of Dewpoint.
Emerging insights into biomolecular condensates have formed at the intersection of disciplines including soft matter physics, biophysics, computation, physical chemistry, pathology, and biology. Dewpoint has assembled a broad scientific advisory board spanning these arenas, to be chaired by MIT Institute Professor Phillip Sharp. Other Scientific Advisors include:
- Simon Alberti, Professor and Chair of Cellular Biochemistry at the Biotechnology Center (BIOTEC), Center for Molecular and Cellular Bioengineering (CMCB), Technical University Dresden
- Arup Chakraborty, Robert T. Haslam Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Physics and Chemistry at MIT
- Bradley Hyman, John B. Penny, Jr. Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and Director of the Alzheimer’s unit at Mass General Institute for Neurological Disease
- Rudolf Jaenisch, Whitehead Institute Founding Member and Professor of Biology at MIT
- Robert Langer, David H. Koch Institute Professor at MIT
- Timothy Mitchison, Hasib Sabbagh Professor of Systems Biology at Harvard Medical School and Director of the Harvard Therapeutics Innovation Hub (I-Hub)
- Rohit Pappu, Edwin H. Murty Professor of Engineering in the Department of Biomedical Engineering and Director of the Center for the Science & Engineering of Living Systems (CSELS) at Washington University in St. Louis
“Insights into biomolecular condensates could provide answers to fundamental mysteries in biology, and we are eager to begin using these to discover new therapeutic approaches to diseases,” said Tony Hyman, co-founder of Dewpoint and Director and Research Group Leader of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics.
Dewpoint is building an interdisciplinary team in Cambridge, MA and Dresden, Germany to industrialize the drugging of condensates. Disease areas affected by condensates include cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, immunology, cardiovascular, women’s health, and virology. Nashat and Tony Hyman will be joined on the board by Dewpoint Chief Scientific Officer Mark Murcko, Srinivas Akkaraju of Samsara BioCapital, and Wei Li of 6 Dimensions Capital.
About Dewpoint Therapeutics
Dewpoint is translating new insights into biomolecular condensates and cellular function to uncover treatments for the toughest diseases. Learn more at www.dewpointtherapeutics.com.
About Polaris Partners
Polaris Partners has a 20-plus-year history of partnering with repeat entrepreneurs and world-class innovators who are improving the way we live and work. The multibillion-dollar firm manages specialty and diversified funds in healthcare and technology with investments across all stages. Polaris has offices in Boston, San Francisco, and New York. Learn more at polarispartners.com.
About Samsara BioCapital
Samsara BioCapital is a new breed of biotech investment fund focused on translating cutting-edge biology into new therapies to treat patients with unmet medical needs. Founded in 2016 by Srinivas Akkaraju, M.D., Ph.D., the team of scientists, investors, and entrepreneurs takes a long-term view to value creation across all stages of public and private life science companies. They believe in a collaborative, hands-on approach, working closely with entrepreneurs to harness exciting scientific advances and build leading companies. Samsara actively manages approximately US$410 million in assets on behalf of endowments, foundations, and family offices.
About 6 Dimensions Capital
6 Dimensions Capital is a leading global healthcare investment firm with offices in Boston, San Francisco, Hong Kong, and Shanghai. The firm focuses on the investments of healthcare startups or growth stage companies with operations in the U.S., Europe, China, Israel, and other countries. They help and enable entrepreneurs to create and grow innovative healthcare businesses for the benefits of patients worldwide. For more information, please visit www.6dimensionscapital.com.
About EcoR1 Capital
EcoR1 Capital LLC is a fundamental biotechnology-focused investment advisory firm. Based in San Francisco, EcoR1 evaluates and selects extraordinary biotechnology companies that are pursuing the highest quality science and demonstrate strong business fundamentals. Like the EcoR1 restriction enzyme which helped to transform the biomedical field, EcoR1 seeks to help move medical research forward through investments into compelling biotech companies that are developing promising new solutions for untreated diseases. For more information, please visit www.ecor1cap.com.
About Alexandria Venture Investments
Alexandria Venture Investments, founded in 1996, is the strategic venture capital arm of Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. (NYSE: ARE). Alexandria Venture Investments focuses on novel, breakthrough discoveries in biopharma, diagnostics, research tools, agtech, and technology. Based on its experience and in-depth understanding of the life science and technology industries, its long-term relationships with leading investors, and its world-class scientific advisory network, Alexandria Venture Investments is uniquely positioned to fund seed-, early-, and growth-stage companies.