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This next-generation CRISPR company is on the rise…

This next-generation CRISPR company is on the rise…
August 21, 2023

Scribe Therapeutics – a company spun out of UC Berkeley – just raised $100 million in a Series B venture capital (VC) round. This is a follow-on to Scribe’s $20 million Series A round back in October of last year.  I have been tracking Scribe since the company got started back in 2019

That’s because Jennifer Doudna is one of its founders. If we remember, Doudna won the Nobel Prize last year for her early work on CRISPR genetic editing technology. Anything she is working on is worth keeping an eye on.  And Scribe’s approach is interesting. The company is using computational biology to create new enzymes for use in CRISPR therapies. Enzymes are the delivery mechanism for getting the therapy to the cells that need to be edited.

So Scribe’s focus is to optimize CRISPR enzymes. This will open the door to all kinds of new therapies. Each enzyme will be tailored for different disease targets.  And Scribe’s first engineered enzyme is called CasX. CasX is smaller than the Cas9 enzyme that many of the first-generation CRISPR therapies use.  Scribe believes that the CasX enzyme will be perfectly suited to tackle neurodegenerative diseases that have been extremely difficult to treat with traditional therapies. 

I’m very excited to see the company’s full development pipeline when it is released.  And what’s remarkable here is that there is absolutely no competition in the space. The development of new CRISPR enzymes represents a greenfield opportunity. It’s a new technology that will create cures for diseases that have been untreatable up to this point.  We will definitely want to keep a close eye on Scribe going forward. 

I suspect that this company will move quickly given its approach. This company is doing some great work. Let’s make sure we have it on our early stage watchlist.

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