A new player joins the RNA editing race on the heels of Eli Lilly’s $1B-plus deal

A day after Eli Lilly inked a $1 billion-plus deal to partner with a quiet RNA editing startup, a new player has emerged to turn up the volume.

ADARx Pharmaceuticals uncloaked on Thursday with a $75 million Series B round to usher its RNA programs into the clinic. The San Diego-based biotech was founded in 2019 to discover therapies that precisely target and edit single-point mutations on RNA transcripts.

Unlike gene editing, which looks to directly — and permanently – alter DNA, the goal of RNA editing is to intercept the broken messages sent out by the DNA of patients with certain diseases and correct it before it gets turned into proteins. To do so, scientists are exploiting a naturally occurring enzyme called ADAR, or adenosine deaminases acting on RNA.

ADARx’s first editing program is being developed for Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AAT deficiency), an inherited condition in which AAT, a…
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