Metagenomi, ArriVent Launch Bid for Nasdaq

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Pictured: Front view of the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York/iStock, hapabapa

Moderna-backed Metagenomi on Friday launched its initial public offering, putting an undisclosed number of shares of its common stock up for sale, according to an SEC filing. The biotech has also not revealed how much it hopes to make.

The gene editing biotech has not yet specified when it plans to close the offering, but after the closing, it will trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker $MGX.

Metagenomi is a precision genetics medicines company with what it describes as a comprehensive genome editing toolbox consisting of programmable nucleases, base editors, RNA-mediated integration systems and CRISPR-based techniques. The biotech is wielding these tools to develop potential cures for various diseases.

Its lead program, for instance, targets hemophilia A by delivering an FVIII gene into what the company calls in its SEC document a “safe harbor location,” which ensures stable expression of the gene, leading to “clinically relevant” circulating concentrations of the FVIII protein. This program is still currently in pre-clinical studies.

Aside from hemophilia A, Metagenomi is also working on therapies for type 1 primary hyperoxaluria and transthyretin amyloidosis.

In November 2020, the gene editing startup closed a $65 million series A funding round, which was backed by Bayer, the Humboldt Fund, HOF Capital, InCube Ventures, Sozo Ventures and Agent Capital. A year later, Metagenomi partnered with Moderna to combine its gene editors with the latter’s lipid nanoparticle delivering technologies.

In January 2023, Metagenomi scored another financing tranche, counting a total of $275 million for its series B round.

Slightly ahead of Metagenomi in the 2024 IPO game is Pennsylvania-based ArriVent, which is focused on developing treatments for cancer. Its lead program is furmonertinib, an investigational tyrosine-kinase inhibitor that is currently in a Phase III study for treatment-naïve patients with locally advanced or metastatic EGFR-mutated non-small cell lung cancer.

The clinical-stage biopharma has a comprehensive clinical development program for furmonertinib—including the Phase III FURVENT study and the Phase Ib FAVOUR and FURTHER and studies—which is evaluating the candidate across various lines of treatment.

ArriVent is also advancing an antibody-drug conjugate in partnership with Aarvik Therapeutics, though this program is still in its discovery phase.

Like Metagenomi, ArriVent has yet to disclose how many shares of its common stock it plans to put up for sale and how much it expects to make. Once the IPO has been completed, the company will trade under the ticker $AVBP.

Tristan Manalac is an independent science writer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. He can be reached at tristan@tristanmanalac.com or tristan.manalac@biospace.com.

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