Miragen Therapeutics Receives $8 M in Venture Capital Financing for Development of MicroRNA-based Therapies
BOULDER, Colo. -- May 19, 2008 - Miragen Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of breakthrough therapies for cardiovascular and muscle disease based on microRNA biology, today announced the completion of an $8 million equity placement. The Series A financing is being co-led by founding investors Atlas Venture and Boulder Ventures, Ltd. and includes additional investments from private individuals. The funding will be employed to expand Miragen's initial Research and Development programs aimed at regulating microRNA for the treatment of heart failure and related diseases.
Miragen was founded in 2007 to exploit recent discoveries showing that specific perturbations in microRNA expression are correlated with various forms of cardiovascular disease. The co-founders of the company include: Eric N. Olson, Ph.D., Professor and Chairman of the Department of Molecular Biology and Associate Director of the D.W. Reynolds Center of Cardiovascular Medicine at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center; Michael R. Bristow, M.D., Ph.D., Chairman and Chief Medical and Scientific Officer of ARCA Biopharma, Professor of Medicine and the former Head of Cardiology at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center; Marvin H. Caruthers, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Colorado; Bruce L. Booth, D. Phil., Principal at Atlas Venture; and William S. Marshall, Ph. D., President and Chief Executive Officer.
"By combining the diverse and yet focused expertise of our founders, we have been able to rapidly build a compelling strategy for the development of novel therapeutics for a variety of cardiovascular and muscle disorders based on microRNA targeting," said William S. Marshall, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer.
"Heart failure remains a significant unmet medical need today, and Miragen's innovative microRNA-based approach directly targets the key gene regulatory mechanisms underlying the disease," added Bruce Booth, D. Phil, Chairman of Miragen's Board of Directors. "We look forward to contributing to the development of this exciting new class of drug candidates."
"The size of the addressable market and Miragen's focus on developing specific microRNA-based drugs in a dedicated therapeutic area made this a very attractive investment for us," added Kyle Lefkoff, Miragen Board Director and Managing Partner of Boulder Ventures, Ltd.
About Atlas Venture: Atlas Venture is a leading early-stage international venture capital firm that invests in technology and life sciences businesses in the U.S. and Europe. Since inception in 1980, its partners have helped build over 300 companies in more than 16 different countries. In the past decade, 47 portfolio companies have been acquired and 40 are now public companies with an aggregate market capitalization of over $20 billion. Atlas Venture manages over $2 billion in capital through offices in Boston, London, Munich and Paris. For more information, visit www.atlasventure.com.
About Boulder Ventures: Boulder Ventures manages venture capital partnerships, making equity investments in start-up, early-stage and emerging-growth companies. Boulder Ventures primarily seeks opportunities in business applications software, communications infrastructure and services, and life sciences IT and services. Boulder Ventures works in partnership with entrepreneurs, providing easily accessible, active support to develop novel business concepts and grow ideas into important companies. The company is headquartered in Boulder, CO with an office in Owings Mills, MD. Boulder Ventures can be contacted through its website - www.boulderventures.com.