Taysha Gene Therapies announced that it has closed an oversubscribed $95 million Series B financing, led by Fidelity Management & Research Company LLC. Additional new investors include funds and accounts managed by BlackRock, GV (formerly Google Ventures), Invus, Casdin Capital, Franklin Templeton, Octagon Capital, Perceptive Advisors LLC, Sands Capital, ArrowMark Partners and Venrock Healthcare Capital Partners. Also participating in the round were founding investors PBM Capital and Nolan Capital. Proceeds from the Series B financing will be used to advance the initial cohort of lead programs into the clinic, accelerate progress on anticipated IND submissions, build a commercially scalable GMP manufacturing facility and continue development of the company’s extensive portfolio of potentially curative gene therapies in partnership with the UT Southwestern Gene Therapy Program.
Taysha is currently developing a pipeline of 17 AAV-based gene therapies for the treatment of monogenic diseases of the CNS in both rare and large patient populations. In addition, the company has exclusive options to acquire four additional programs across three distinct franchises, including neurodegenerative diseases, neurodevelopmental disorders and genetic forms of epilepsy. TSHA-101 is expected to initiate clinical studies later this year for the treatment of GM2 Gangliosidosis, followed by TSHA-102 for the treatment of Rett syndrome, TSHA-103 for the treatment of SLC6A1 haploinsufficiency disorder and TSHA-104 for the treatment of SURF1 deficiency. Taysha expects to file INDs for each of these four product candidates by the end of 2021.
“We have brought together experts in gene therapy with leading healthcare and institutional investors to create a company that is uniquely positioned to advance the development of potentially curative gene therapies for CNS disease in rare and large patient populations,” said Sean Nolan, Chairman of the Board of Taysha and former CEO of AveXis. “We believe this financing provides significant validation of our corporate strategy and will enable us to continue to rapidly translate programs from preclinical development into the clinic.”
Taysha launched in April of 2020, led by former investors and executives from AveXis, the company behind the second gene therapy to receive U.S. approval, Zolgensma, a treatment for the rare neuromuscular disorder spinal muscular atrophy.