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Turn completes funding round for disruptive technologies

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Silicon Valley investor Khosla Ventures joins esteemed group of global investors backing Turn Biotechnologies.

Turn Biotechnologies, a company developing novel RNA medicines for untreatable age-related conditions, today announced that it has closed its latest round of funding. The company has the support of investors focused on identifying and backing enterprises that have the potential to change the world with their disruptive technologies.

Longevity.Technology: Turn is sitting in an interesting space; spun out of Stanford with the aim of developing therapies that harness the power of Yamanaka factors, and the global rights for new technology that reprograms cells to undo many of the effects of aging and new artificial niche (AN) technology, it really is focused on repairing tissue at the cellular level and bringing disruptive technologies out of the lab and into the clinic. Turn’s technology provides a platform from which to attack a variety of diseases related to age, and the company is currently completing pre-clinical research on tailored therapies targeting indications in dermatology, ophthalmology, osteo-arthritis and cartilage damage and musculature.

Khosla Ventures, with a history of investing in “Black Swan” ideas that offer significant upside, became the newest investor in Turn, joining the Shanda Group and Formic Ventures. These firms have stakes in cutting-edge Asian, European and North American companies and are credited with investing in tipping point companies worldwide.

“Turn sits at the convergence of several areas of recent dramatic innovation, namely in delivery of RNA as a therapeutic, understanding of cellular senescence, and cellular reprogramming,” said Alex Morgan, MD, PhD, Partner at Khosla Ventures. “This technology out of Stanford University is on track to creating novel therapeutics to help heal and rejuvenate age-damaged tissues.”

Khosla, Shanda Group and Formic Ventures join Turn’s early investors, Methuselah Fund and Methuselah Foundation, which specialise in companies committed to extending healthy lifespans and improving quality of life as we age.

 


 

“Turn sits at the convergence of several areas of recent dramatic innovation, namely in delivery of RNA as a therapeutic, understanding of cellular senescence, and cellular reprogramming,”

 


 

“These investments by funds with a reputation for picking winners around the world recognize Turn’s innovation, vision and potential to disrupt the market,” said CEO Anja Krammer. “As the population ages, millions of elderly persons are forced to cope with age-related conditions for which only symptomatic treatment exists. Our new investors enable Turn to bring to the market the promise of a technology that has the potential to improve quality of life and change healthcare economics globally.”

Turn focuses on the repair of tissue at the cellular level, using its patent-pending mRNA platform technology, ERA™, to combat the effects of aging in the epigenome, thus restoring optimal gene expression and enabling cells to function as vigorously as younger cells. This restores the cells’ ability to prevent or treat disease and heal or regenerate tissue.

Use of mRNA, which led to the quick development of two COVID-19 vaccines approved for use in the United States, promises to revolutionise the development of therapeutics by making that development safer, faster, more efficient and extremely tuneable to patient need.

Turn’s epigenetic reprogramming technology has the potential to significantly impact a wide variety of age-related diseases, and the company is currently exploring treatments for dermatologic, osteoarthritic, ophthalmic and muscular conditions. Its work in these areas has also attracted several potential partners, which are currently in discussions with Turn.

Image credit: Edward JennerPexels

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Eleanor Garth
Deputy Editor Now a science and medicine journalist, Eleanor worked as a consultant for university spin-out companies and provided research support at Imperial College London and various London hospitals in a former life.
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