Optogenetics pioneer Ray Therapeutics announced a successful $100 million Series A financing round today.
Novo Holdings A/S led the oversubscribed round, which saw participation from Deerfield Management, Norwest Venture Partners, Platanus, MRL Ventures Fund, Merck & Co., Inc., and existing investor 4BIO Capital.
The funding will allow Ray Therapeutics to progress their pipeline and expand their board of directors.
Optogenetics uses gene therapy to stimulate retinal cells with a light-sensitive protein, creating a visual signal transmitted to the brain.
Ray Therapeutics is leveraging this technology to develop treatments for diseases such as retinitis pigmentosa, inherited retinal dystrophies, and macular degeneration, where normal light-sensing cells are lost.
The company’s lead candidate, RTx-015, is anticipated to enter human clinical trials soon.
Ray Therapeutics CEO Paul Bresge celebrated the funding as a “significant milestone” in their mission to address the needs of patients with blinding diseases.
Novo Holdings, along with other top-tier investors, will accelerate the development of their optogenetic gene therapies.
Ray Camahort, Ph.D., a partner at Novo Holdings, commended Ray Therapeutics for developing the world’s first bioengineered optogenetic therapies optimized for human vision.
“The company’s next-generation technology platform, strong preclinical data, and world-class genetic medicines team, position them as leaders in developing potential best-in-class vision restorative therapeutics,” he stated.