Record Year So Far for Massachusetts Biotech IPOs
It’s been a pretty good year for mergers and acquisitions in the biopharma industry, with Takeda Pharmaceutical buying Shire for $62.2 billion, and the year starting with Sanofi buying Bioverativ for $11.6 billion and then Ablynx for $4.8 billion. Celgene acquired Juno Therapeutics for $9 billion, shortly after buying Impact Biomedicines for $1.1 billion.
But the landscape for initial public offerings (IPOs) has been excellent as well, particularly in Massachusetts, which has recorded 13 IPOs since the beginning of the year, raising a combined $1.3 billion. This exceeds by money raised the record in 2014, when 17 Massachusetts biotechs raised $1.2 billion, and the year’s only half over. And there are three biotech companies in Massachusetts that have filed to go public, but hadn’t done so yet. One of those includes Rubius Therapeutics.
The list of Massachusetts biotech companies with IPOs so far this year is listed below.
#1. Cue BioPharma. Headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., Cue focuses on injectable biologics engineered to modulate the immune system to treat cancer, chronic infectious diseases and autoimmune disorders. Its IPO on January 2 raised $66 million.
#2. Unum Therapeutics. Also based in Cambridge, Unum is also working in the immuno-oncology space, developing therapies based on an antibody-coupled T cell receptor. It is differentiated from CAR-T or TCR by not being restricted to a particular target and may have applications in a broad range of cancer types. The company’s IPO raised $69 million on March 29.
#3. Scholar Rock. Of course, based in Cambridge, Scholar Rock is focused on the biology of growth factor activation, targeting growth factors in the disease microenvironment. This has applications in neuromuscular disorders, cancer, fibrosis, and anemia. It raised $75 million on May 24.
#4. RestorBio. Headquartered in Boston, RestorBio is focusing on aging-related diseases. Its lead program, RTB101, focuses on the mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway, an evolutionarily conserved pathway that regulates aging. On January 26, the company raised $85 million.
#5. Evelo Biosciences. Located in Cambridge, Evelo Biosciences focuses on monoclonal microbials for oncology and inflammatory diseases. Its lead product is EDP1066, currently in a clinical trial in inflammatory diseases, such as psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, and ulcerative colitis/Crohn’s colitis. On May 9, the company raised $85 million.
#6. AvroBio. Headquartered in Cambridge, AvroBio is focused on lentiviral-based gene therapies for rare diseases. Its lead gene therapy is AVR-RD-01 for Fabry disease. It also has three more gene therapies for other lysosomal storage disorders. On June 21 it raised $99 million.
#7. Neon Therapeutics. Located in—you guessed it—Cambridge, Neon is working on directing the immune system using neoantigens to treat cancer. Neoantigens are specific genetic mutations that are common in cancer. The company’s June 27 IPO raised $100 million.
#8. Magenta Therapeutics. Magenta is based in Cambridge and is developing therapeutics for bone marrow transplant for patients with autoimmune diseases, blood cancers and genetic diseases. The company’s most advanced clinical product is MGTA-456, a cell therapy in a Phase II clinical trial in patients with inherited metabolic diseases. Magenta raised $100 million on June 21.
#9. Surface Oncology. Based in Cambridge, Surface Oncology, not surprisingly given its name, focuses on cancer. The differentiating factor is its focus on the tumor microenvironment. On June 12, it initiated a Phase I clinical trial of SRF373, a fully human antibody targeting CD73, the second of its immunotherapies to advance into this clinic this year. On April 19, its IPO raised $108 million.
#10. Translate Bio. Headquartered in Lexington, Mass., Translate focuses on messenger RNA (mRNA) to treat diseases caused by protein or gene dysfunction. On June 11, it signed a deal with Sanofi Pasteur to develop up to five undisclosed infectious disease pathogens. The company raised $122 million on June 28.
#11. Solid Biosciences. Based in Cambridge, Solid is focused on a gene therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). On June 18, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) lifted a clinical hold on the company’s IGNITE DMD Phase I/II clinical trial of SGT-001 for DMD, acknowledging the company had addressed all the questions the agency had in its clinical hold. The company raised $125 million on January 26.
#12. Homology Medicines. Headquartered in Bedford, Mass., Homology is a genetic medicines company focused on rare genetic diseases. Its proprietary platform utilizes its human hematopoietic stem cell-derived adeno-associated virus vectors (AAVHSCs) to deliver genetic medicines either through a gene therapy or nuclease-free gene editing modality for a variety of genetic disorders. Its IPO on March 28 raised $144 million.
#13. Kiniksa Pharmaceuticals. Kiniksa has headquarters in Hamilton, Bermuda and Lexington, Mass. The company’s pipeline includes rilonacept for recurrent pericarditis, mavrilimumab for giant cell arteritis, KPL-716 for prurigo nodularis/atopic dermatitis, KPL-045 for T-cell dependent and B-cell-mediated indications, and KPL-404 for the same as KPL-045. On May 24, its IPO raised $153 million.