OMass Therapeutics Raises $100 Million in Series B Financing to Progress Drug Pipeline in Immunology and Rare Diseases

  • Financing led by new investors, GV, Northpond Ventures and Sanofi Ventures, with existing investors, Syncona, Oxford Science Enterprises, and Oxford University also participating
  • Investment will advance OMass’s portfolio of novel drugs against highly-validated, yet intractable or inadequately drugged, membrane- and complex-bound proteins towards the clinic
  • OMass’s pipeline of small molecule therapeutics includes five programs in rare diseases and immunological conditions that target solute carriers, complex-bound proteins and GPCRs, all discovered using OMass’s proprietary OdyssION™ platform

Oxford, United Kingdom – 28 April 2022 – OMass Therapeutics (‘OMass’, or ‘the Company’), a biotechnology company that identifies medicines against highly validated target ecosystems, today announces its $100 million (£75.5 million) Series B financing round. The international syndicate of top-tier life science specialists was led by new investors, GV, Northpond Ventures and Sanofi Ventures, with existing investors, Syncona, Oxford Science Enterprises and Oxford University also participating.

Proceeds from the financing will be used to advance OMass’s portfolio towards clinical trials. This includes the development of an insurmountable antagonist of the MC2 receptor for congenital adrenal hyperplasia, a gasdermin D inhibitor for the treatment of inflammatory diseases, a GPR65 agonist for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease and two earlier-stage programs targeting solute carriers.

Ros Deegan, CEO of OMass, said: “The completion of this oversubscribed round with such high-calibre investors is recognition of the significance of our OdyssION™ platform and its potential to support the development of an exciting portfolio of novel drug candidates. We have already made significant progress against highly validated but previously ‘undruggable’ targets and can now accelerate them towards clinical development while continuing to expand our pipeline.”

Originally spun out of Oxford University, OMass has commercialised Professor Dame Carol Robinson’s breakthrough research in native mass spectrometry to develop its proprietary drug discovery platform, OdyssION™. The platform integrates novel biochemistry techniques, next-generation native mass spectrometry, and custom chemistry, to allow for the interrogation of protein interactions within its native ecosystem while avoiding the confounding complexity of the cell.

OMass’s OdyssION™ platform delivers several key benefits in the search for new drugs against previously intractable targets, including discovering drug binders with high sensitivity without filtering on activity, establishing an unambiguous link between binding and function to drive smart lead optimization, and identifying natural allosteric sites that can be targeted for drug discovery.

Following the financing, Scott Biller, Ph.D., Executive Venture Partner at GV, Diana Bernstein, Ph.D., Vice President at Northpond Ventures, and Laia Crespo, Ph.D., Partner at Sanofi Ventures, will join the OMass Board of Directors.

Scott Biller, Ph.D., Executive Venture Partner at GV, said: “By studying proteins in their native state as found within the cell, the OMass platform can address many important targets that have been elusive until now.  Through this platform, OMass has created an impressive portfolio of therapeutic programs with the potential to dramatically improve the lives of patients.”

Diana Bernstein, Ph.D., Vice President at Northpond Ventures, said: “OMass is fundamentally shifting the process by which we identify and evaluate chemistry for the most challenging drug targets. Native mass spectrometry uniquely permits simultaneous evaluation of drug binding and functional effect, and OMass is a leader in this pursuit.”

Laia Crespo, Ph.D., Partner at Sanofi Ventures, said: “OMass’s vision and the potential of its platform aligns with the purpose of our fund. As a strategic venture investor, we support top tier life science entrepreneurs with innovative ideas and transformative new products and technologies of strategic interest to Sanofi. We partner with management to advance innovation that has the potential to deliver new approaches that can transform patients’ lives and we look forward to supporting OMass as it develops new drugs for the treatment of rare diseases and immunological conditions.”

Edward Hodgkin, Ph.D., Chair of OMass’s Board of Directors and Partner at Syncona added: “We are pleased with this financing round which will support OMass as it looks to progress its pipeline of small molecule drugs. The strength of this global group of top tier life science investors reflects confidence in the company’s technology and supports our ambition to build a sustainable therapeutics business that has the potential to develop novel drugs in areas of high unmet medical need. We are also delighted to welcome Scott Biller, Diana Bernstein and Laia Crespo to the OMass Board, all who have significant experience in transforming technology platforms into sustainable drug discovery and development businesses.” 


More news and updates

BIA celebrates RQ BIO licencing agreement with AstraZeneca for monoclonal antibodies targeted at COVID-19

Today RQ BIO has announced a licencing agreement with AstraZeneca for its portfolio of early-stage monoclonal antibodies targeted against SARS-CoV-2, with the company also emerging from stealth mode on completion of the agreement. RQ Bio is a UK-based biotechnology company focused on developing treatments and preventative therapies based on potent broad-spectrum mAbs to address areas of unmet need in vulnerable patient populations.

CEO Update | 16 May 2022

Last week we gave our response to the Department of Work and Pensions consultation on facilitating investments in illiquid assets. We called on the UK Government to improve transparency in the pensions industry so that pension savers have access to diversified investment strategies benefiting from the wealth-creating opportunities of the UK’s innovative, venture capital-backed industries, including biotech and life sciences, while supporting issues the public care about, like better healthcare and a cleaner environment.

Give pension savers the opportunity to invest in the development of new medicines and a greener economy

The BioIndustry Association (BIA) has called on the UK Government to improve transparency in the pensions industry so that savers can make informed decisions on what their money is invested in.

CEO Update | 9 May 2022

Congratulations to Omass Therapeutics for raising $100 million in the Series B financing round, as well as two BIA member companies - Scotland-based EnteroBiotix and Solvemed group, who were featured in Forbes ‘30 under 30 Europe’ Science and Healthcare Edition for 2022. We are also glad to see engineering biology receive £20.6 million in investment from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Read more on IP TRIPS Waiver, update on Northern Ireland and BBSRC Business and Academia Prosperity Partnership.


More within