Newly launched life sciences company, Syros Pharmaceuticals, has announced a $30 million Series A financing round led by company co-founders ARCH Venture Partners and Flagship Ventures. The company plans to use the capital “to accelerate the discovery and development of novel gene control medicines,” called super super-enhancers. The Watertown, Massachusetts-based company’s proprietary platform “identifies the master switches for disease genes, opening a whole new approach to novel therapeutics.” The company’s initial focus is on cancer, but it reports that the platform will also be applicable to other therapeutic areas.
“It is increasingly clear that much of human diseases lies in the switches that control genes rather than the genes themselves,” Richard Young, one of the company’s three co-founders, said. “We have identified super-enhancers with key cancer driving genes in all tumors studied and have demonstrated that we can selectively disrupt these genes through inhibition of enhancer factors. Given the complexity of gene expression, the discovery of a small number of powerful gene control regulators provides a promising and exciting new approach to understanding key determinants of cell identity in normal and disease states.” See Syros Pharmaceuticals News Release; Boston Business Journal, April 11, 2013.