Rapamycin inhibiting protein kinase mTORC1
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Molecular glue developer Magnet Biomedicine today announced a $50 million Series A financing co-led by founding investor Newpath Partners and ARCH Venture Partners. Stuart Schreiber, PhD, of the Broad Institute, Harvard University, is one of the co-founders of the company, which aims to go beyond protein degradation.

Magnet is, “Reimagining what is achievable with molecular glues by looking beyond known protein–protein interactions and analyzing the broad protein landscape to pair target proteins with rationally selected presenter proteins to drive therapeutic effects,” according to a press release.

Molecular glue research has typically focused on enzymes that tag proteins for degradation. Magnet says its compounds can induce “cooperative protein–protein interactions.”

This financing will support Magnet’s development of its proprietary TrueGlues and enable advancement of programs spanning several indications, including cardiovascular disease, oncology, and immune disorders.

“Molecular glues offer expansive potential to transform human medicine. Recent advancements, however, have been narrowly focused on tangential approaches such as degradation, leaving much of the potential of true molecular glues untapped,” said Schreiber.

He added that, “Technological advancement and innovation in proteomics, high-throughput screening, and bioinformatics are fueling renewed interest in molecular glues—bringing opportunities for rational selection and design of clinically impactful molecular glues within our scientific reach.”

Magnet’s TrueGlue discovery platform combines screening technologies using proprietary and diverse chemical libraries and human-biology-driven target selection.

The company says its small molecules harness approaches beyond protein degradation and can also restrict drug effects to disease-relevant tissues to avoid toxicities, inducing biological synergy on defined targets, mimicking monoclonal antibodies, and targeting historically undruggable proteins. It is initially progressing TrueGlues to address diseases “strongly supported by human biology, with clinically and genetically validated targets and clear opportunities to improve treatment options for patients,” according to the release.

Magnet was founded by renowned molecular glue researcher Schreiber; Nobel Laureate Michael Rosbash, PhD; chemoproteomics pioneer Benjamin Cravatt, PhD; human geneticist Richa Saxena, PhD; and chemical biologist David Spiegel, MD, PhD. The company is led by President and Chief Scientific Officer, Brian Safina, PhD.

“Our TrueGlue discovery platform enables us to take a broad view of the protein landscape to develop a new class of molecular glues capable of facilitating novel protein–protein interactions with the potential to drive clinically meaningful therapeutic responses in patients,” said Safina. “We are grateful for the support from ARCH and Newpath as we progress this novel approach.”

The company’s scientific co-founders are: Schreiber; Michael Rosbash, PhD, Brandeis University, Nobel Laureate (2017); Benjamin Cravatt, PhD, The Scripps Research Institute; Richa Saxena, PhD, Massachusetts General Hospital, Broad Institute; David Spiegel, MD, PhD, Yale University.

“Magnet is poised to drive new innovation and bring forth a robust portfolio of novel molecular glue medicines with the potential to transform the way we address human disease,” said Kristina Burow, Managing Director at ARCH Venture Partners.

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