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Quanta Therapeutics Secures Over $50M to Propel KRAS Inhibitor Development

Quanta Therapeutics, a trailblazer in the biopharmaceutical landscape, recently announced a whopping $50.7 million Series D funding to accelerate its two key KRAS inhibitor initiatives. The funding round was spearheaded by Avidity Partners, and saw participation from a strong consortium of existing investors, and a couple of new participants. This financial boost brings the total funds raised by Quanta since its inception to an impressive $142 million.

The Investment Round

Leading the Series D financing was Avidity Partners, with existing investors such as Sofinnova Investments, Vida Ventures, Surveyor Capital (a Citadel company), Longitude Capital, BVF Partners, and AbbVie Ventures offering their continued support. New entrants to the investor syndicate were GC&H Investments (partner fund of Cooley LLP) and WS Investment Company (the venture arm of Wilson Sonsini).

"This additional funding will position us to rapidly advance our two lead KRAS programs into the clinic in 2024," commented Perry Nisen, MD, PhD, Chief Executive Officer of Quanta Therapeutics.

The Promise of Quanta's KRAS Inhibitors

Quanta Therapeutics is harnessing a unique chemistry that targets multiple conformations of KRAS. The company's allosteric approach could potentially expand the treatable KRAS-mutant cancers and circumvent known resistance mechanisms. The recent funding will be directed towards advancing Quanta's pipeline, which includes:

  1. Allosteric KRAS inhibitors, QTX3034 and QTX3046, both of which have exhibited potent anti-tumor activity in preclinical profiles.

  2. A promising RAF1 discovery program, which employs direct allosteric modulation of the active RAS-RAF1 membrane signaling complex to selectively target a broad spectrum of RAS-driven tumors.

  3. Additional discovery programs with undisclosed targets, potentially serving as combination partners for Quanta's lead programs.

"We are thrilled to lead the Series D investment and look forward to working with the Quanta team to bring these important medicines to cancer patients as quickly as possible," expressed Lei Meng, Senior Therapeutics Analyst at Avidity Partners.

The Role of RAS and the MAPK Pathway

Themitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway, a chain of proteins that includes RAS, RAF, MEK, and ERK, is pivotal in regulating cellular growth, proliferation, differentiation, and survival. A mutation in any of these proteins can trigger tumor development and growth.

RAS is the most frequently mutated oncogene in cancer, with KRAS mutations occurring in nearly one-quarter of all human cancers. These mutations impair the ability of RAS to convert from its active 'ON' state to its inactive 'OFF' state, leading to the sustained activation of the MAPK signaling pathway and ultimately driving tumorigenesis.

Quanta Therapeutics: A Synopsis

Quanta Therapeutics is a privately-held biopharmaceutical company that is primarily focused on the most prevalent and elusive target in oncology—RAS. The company's vision is to develop novel small molecule cancer medicines by selectively targeting protein-protein interactions that are key to oncogenic RAS activity. Quanta's headquarters are located in South San Francisco, CA, with an additional site in Radnor, PA.

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