BridgeBio Pharma gains $135M for genetic disease work

The biotech works on a “hub and spoke” corporate structure.

Early-stage Californian biotech BridgeBio Pharma has got off a $135 million financing round as it looks to push deeper into genetic disease R&D.

The $135 million comes from across a broad spectrum of funders, including new investor Viking Global Investors, as well as existing investor KKR, who co-led the round. They were joined by Perceptive Advisors alongside AIG, Aisling Capital, Cormorant Capital and Janus Funds.

The startup adds that these funds are not the end, as this deal also comes “with potential to access significant additional capital via insiders,” according to a statement, although further details were not revealed.

The company will use the cash boost to work on its early-stage discovery and development programs, with the goal of creating genetically targeted therapeutics that “address the fundamental causes of disease.”

It’s a bit different to your average startup, and works within a “hub and spoke” corporate structure that has seen it launch 10 drug programs under its dermatology, oncology, cardiology, neurology and endocrine business units.

Targets for these include: transthyretin amyloidosis, pantothenate kinase-associated neurodegeneration, Gorlin syndrome and frequent basal cell carcinomas, dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa, Darier and Hailey-Hailey diseases, Netherton syndrome and SHP-2, K-RAS and C-RAF driven cancers.

“BridgeBio Pharma continues to focus on our mission to create medicines for patients with genetic diseases,” said Neil Kumar, Ph.D., co-founder and CEO of BridgeBio Pharma.

“In particular, we work to identify promising, but often overlooked, early-stage innovation that can translate into drugs that matter for patients. We are fortunate to be supported by investors who believe in our mission,” he added.

“Modern drug discovery requires modern business infrastructure,” added company co-founder and investor Andrew W. Lo, Ph.D., the Charles E. and Susan T. Harris professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management. Lo also serves as director of the Laboratory for Financial Engineering.

“Despite the terrific scientific innovations we've seen in biomedicine, there's been much less innovation on the corporate side. BridgeBio employs a novel structure that combines portfolio diversification with asset-level focus to sustainably develop drugs for genetic disease.”