Beacon raises $170m to propel eye disease gene therapy

Ophthalmic gene therapy firm Beacon Therapeutics has raised $170 million in a series B funding.

Shreeyashi Ojha, Reporter

July 8, 2024

1 Min Read

The amount raised will be used to bolster the clinical development of the firm’s lead asset, AGTC-501 for X-Linked Retinitis Pigmentosa (XLRP), a blinding orphan disease with no available treatments.

The lead development candidate, AGTC-501, is a gene therapy program under investigation for treating XLRP, an inherited monogenic recessive disorder leading to progressive vision loss in boys and young men.

XLRP is mainly caused by mutations in the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator (RPGR) gene. AGTC-501 expresses the full-length RPGR protein, targeting the comprehensive photoreceptor damage caused by XLRP, including both rod and cone loss.

“This financing and the partnership of this high-quality syndicate will propel Beacon's pipeline and enable the company to advance its programs for both rare and prevalent ophthalmic diseases,” said Elisa Petris, board director of Beacon.

The firm also appointed Dmitrij Hristodorov and Wouter Joustra, general partners at Forbion, and Cariad Chester, managing partner at TCGX, to its board of directors, while Dominic Schmidt, general partner at Advent Life Sciences, will take over as the board observer.

“I am confident that along with the addition of Dmitrij Hristodorov, Wouter Joustra and Cariad Chester to the Beacon Board, these funds will support the ongoing development of our late-stage and pre-clinical pipeline and enable acceleration of the development of AGTC-501 as we progress through the clinic and toward commercialization,” said David Fellows, CEO of Beacon.

The financing round was led by Forbion, and was attended by Syncona Limited, Oxford Science Enterprises and the University of Oxford, as well as TCGX and Advent Life Sciences. JP Morgan served as the exclusive placement agent for Beacon in this transaction.

About the Author(s)

Shreeyashi Ojha

Reporter, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering the manufacturing and processing sectors for biopharmaceuticals globally.  

Originally from India, I am a Londoner at heart. I have recently graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London.  

Feel free to reach out to me at: [email protected].

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