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4s3 Bioscience is Third Company to Repay Accelerator Loan from Massachusetts Life Sciences Center

3/16/2012 9:13:07 AM

Medford, MA – The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and 4s3 Bioscience, Inc. today announced the Medford-based company’s repayment of the Center’s Accelerator loan, with interest.

In June, 2010 4s3 Bioscience, Inc., an emerging Boston-area biotechnology company focused on developing genetic disease therapies for orphan neuromuscular disorders, was awarded a loan of $600,000 from the Center through a program that provides working capital to promising early-stage life sciences companies. The loan has been repaid in full, with interest, for a total repayment of $685,134. The repayment comes after 4s3 Bioscience was successful in securing $20 million in private financing from an affiliate of Alopexx Enterprises LLC earlier this month.

“Entrepreneurship is essential to the strength of our innovation economy, and it is great to see another local start-up achieving success with the support of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center,” said the Patrick/Murray Administration’s Secretary of Housing & Economic Development, Gregory Bialecki,, who co-chairs the Life Sciences Center’s Board of Directors. “This company’s success at raising private capital will lead to both jobs and scientific innovation here in Massachusetts.”

“4s3 Bioscience has successfully leveraged our Accelerator loan into substantial private capital,” said Massachusetts Life Sciences Center President & CEO Susan Windham-Bannister. “This is exactly the objective of the Accelerator Program -- to de-risk promising early-stage companies and make them more attractive to private investors. Three of the companies that received loans have been in a position to pay us back after less than two years and this demonstrates the success of our approach. We are pleased to accept 4s3’s repayment of our loan, and look forward to an ongoing partnership with this innovative young company.”

“The Accelerator loan was an essential component in the company’s overall financing strategy, “ said 4s3 Bioscience President & CEO Timothy Harris. “It provided 4s3 with critical funding to support ongoing company operations during our successful transition from basic research to early preclinical development, and ultimately to attract and secure significant venture capital financing.”

Dustin Armstrong, Ph.D., Vice President of Research at 4s3 said, “In addition to meaningful financial support, the rigorous selection process for the Accelerator loan provided key external validation for our company programs. Massachusetts is a world leader in the life sciences so to be recognized as a top innovator in this state is an accomplishment that distinguishes a company seeking to raise the significant capital needed for therapeutic and technological advancements in today’s competitive market.”

In September 2010, Good Start Genetics became the first company to pay back an Accelerator loan from the Life Sciences Center, after the company raised a Series A round of $18 million. In October 2010 InVivo Therapeutics repaid their loan after securing $10.5 million in private financing.

About 4s3 Bioscience, Inc.

4s3 Bioscience is an emerging Boston-area biotechnology company, focused on developing genetic disease therapies for orphan neuromuscular disorders. The company’s platform is an antibody-based system capable of enhanced intracellular delivery of active proteins, enzymes and other macromolecules to skeletal muscle. 4s3 was founded in 2007 by Vice President of Research, Dustin Armstrong, Ph.D. and President and CEO, Timothy Harris and received seed funding from Genzyme Ventures in 2008. The company has strong intellectual property protecting its platform, including a licensed portfolio from UCLA. In addition to the Series A financing, the company has received prior funding from the following organizations: Massachusetts Life Science Center, the Muscular Dystrophy Association, National Institute of Health, and the HHS Therapeutic Discovery Project. 4s3 occupies laboratory space at the UMass Boston Venture Development Center. For more information please go to

About the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center

The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (“the Center”) is a quasi-public agency of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts tasked with implementing the Massachusetts Life Sciences Act, a ten-year, $1 billion initiative that was signed into law in June of 2008. The Center’s mission is to create jobs in the life sciences and support vital scientific research that will improve the human condition. This work includes making financial investments in public and private institutions that are advancing life sciences research, development and commercialization as well as building ties among sectors of the Massachusetts life sciences community. For more information, visit

About the Life Sciences Accelerator Program

In order to expand life sciences-related employment opportunities, promote health-related innovations and stimulate research and development, manufacturing and commercialization in the life sciences, the Life Sciences Accelerator Program provides loans to companies engaged in life sciences research and development, commercialization and manufacturing in Massachusetts. Target entities are generally early-stage life sciences companies with a high-potential for technology commercialization, rapid growth, and downstream private equity financing. The program is designed to help sustain these companies through a critical stage of development and to leverage additional sources of capital to bring cutting edge innovation to the marketplace.

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