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Newton Biocapital invests in EditForce to support development of a unique DNA/RNA editing platform based on PPR protein technology

Newton Biocapital invests in EditForce to support development of a unique DNA/RNA editing platform based on PPR protein technology

Brussels, Belgium / Tokyo, Japan – 1 July 2021 – Newton Biocapital (“Newton”), a life sciences investment fund active in Europe and Japan and focused on the treatment and prevention of chronic diseases, has announced its follow-up investment in EditForce, Inc. (“EditForce”) in Japan. As a lead investor, Newton invested EUR 3.1 million (JPY 400 million) in EditForce as part of a total tranche of EUR 10 million.

With this investment, EditForce will continue research and development of its unique, proprietary gene-editing platform. Based on pentatricopeptide repeat (PPR) protein technology, the platform enables precise editing of not only DNA but also RNA. Due to its differentiated mode of action, this novel technology has the potential to impact upon a range of industries, including pharmaceutical, agricultural, and biomanufacturing. EditForce owns several pipelines, both with other partners and independently. The focus is currently set on increasing innovation in treatments for RNA abnormality diseases, with EditForce developing a wide range of applications in other therapeutic fields as well.

Takashi Ono, CEO of EditForce: “We’re very pleased to be supported by Newton, which has a wealth of investment experience and achievements in the biotechnology and life science businesses. We have our unique gene editing platform technology, especially advantageous to editing abnormal RNAs. We have already acquired significant drug efficacy data for genetic disease model animals, and will continue to take this opportunity to further acquire data and enhance pipelines.”  

Yao Li, Investment Director at Newton: “EditForce’s unique PPR-based approach for gene editing enables not only DNA editing but also RNA editing. Their recent proof of concept achievement and follow-up studies on RNA abnormality disease demonstrates the great potential of the technology. We believe it will trigger strong market interest in the medical field and beyond, eventually providing an effective alternative solution to CRISPR-Cas9.”

Alain Parthoens, Managing Partner of Newton: “We’re pleased to be supporting this extremely promising technology emerging from Japan’s world-class academic sphere. We see enormous benefit to connecting Japanese life sciences with European financing, as the synergy between the two enables the development of innovative solutions, such as EditForce’s PPR protein technology, with the potential to improve lives around the world.”

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Last Updated: 01-Jul-2021