Third Rock Ventures Quietly Launches Tango Therapeutics in Editas Medicine’s HQ

Third Rock Ventures Quietly Launches Tango Therapeutics in Editas Medicine’s HQ March 7, 2017
By Mark Terry, BioSpace.com Breaking News Staff

A new biotech company, Tango Therapeutics, is being launched by Third Rock Ventures and will be leasing 9,654 square feet of space at Editas Medicine headquarters in Cambridge, Mass.

Not much is known about the new company. The information was found in a federal filing by Editas, indicating it was subleasing the space. Third Rock was behind Editas’ own launch in 2013.

Alexis Borisy will be president and board chairman of Tango. Borisy is a partner with Third Rock and a member of the Editas board of directors. Borisy is known for founding a number of life science companies including Foundation Medicine and Blueprint Medicines .

Robert Tepper, co-founder of Third Rock Ventures and partner, will also serve on Tango’s board of directors.

Bizapedia indicates that Kevin Gillis will be treasurer. Gillis is a partner and chief financial officer of Third Rock. Mitchell Bloom will be secretary. Bloom is a partner and chair of Goodwin’s Life Sciences Practice.

Third Rock is Massachusetts’ largest life science venture capital company. It has raised $1.9 billion since 2007. Thirteen of the companies backed by Third Rock have gone public, most recently Jounce Therapeutics . Others include Editas and bluebird bio .

On March 3, Editas announced that its first employee and chief operating officer, Alexandra Glucksmann, was leaving the company. There has been quite a number of changes in the company’s executive team in the last six to nine months. In October 2016, Gerald Cox joined the company as chief medical officer. Before joining Editas he was vice president of Rare Disease Clinical Development at Sanofi Genzyme .

At the same time, the company indicated that Kenneth LeClair was joining as vice president, Technical Development and Manufacturing. Before, he was executive director, Technical Research and Development of the Cell and Gene Therapies Unit at Novartis Pharmaceuticals .

Semiramis Trotto also joined as vice president, Human Resources. Before Editas, Trotto was the vice president of Human Resources, Oncology, for Baxalta .

And on August 22, B>Charles Albright was hired as chief scientific officer. Prior to joining Editas, Albright was vice president of Genetically Defined Diseases and Genomics at Bristol-Myers Squibb .

The company’s fourth-quarter and full-year conference call will be held today at 5:00 p.m.

Editas utilizes CRISPR gene editing technology. The technology has been tangled in a complicated patent lawsuit between the University of California, the University of Vienna, Emmanuelle Charpentier and the Broad Institute. On February 15, 2017, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published a favorable decision, granting Broad’s Motion for No Interference in Fact.

“We are pleased with the USPTO’s decision of ‘no interference in fact’ for the patents that have been granted to the Broad Institute for their innovative and fundamental work on CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing,” said Katrine Bosley, Editas’ president and chief executive officer, in a statement. “This important decision affirms the inventiveness of the Broad’s work in translating the biology of the natural world into fundamental building blocks to create unprecedented medicines. At Editas Medicine, we are continuing to invest in this technology to build our business for the long-term and to create genome editing therapies for patients suffering from genetically-defined and genetically-treatable diseases.”

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