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Bluebird bio raises $60mm through oversubscribed Series D venture round
Gene therapy firm bluebird bio LLC has raised $60mm through an oversubscribed Series D venture round. New backers Deerfield Partners, RA Capital, Ramius Capital Group, and two undisclosed blue chip public investment funds were joined by current shareholders, which collectively invested $15mm: Arch Venture Partners, Third Rock Ventures, TVM Capital, and Forbion Capital Partners, plus eight other unnamed investors. Shire PLC also took part as a strategic investor. The company will use the money to begin a Phase II/III trial of Lenti-D for childhood cerebral adrenoleukodystrophy in the US and Europe next year, and a separate Phase I/II trial of Lentiglobin in the US for beta-thalassemia. Bluebird bio will also continue developing its Lentiglobin sickle cell disease program and expand its manufacturing, clinical, and commercial infrastructure. The financing--the third-largest venture round of the year behind Warp Drive Bio ($125mm) and Agendia ($65mm)--closed just days after the first gene therapy (uniQure BV’s Glybera for lipoprotein lipase deficiency) cleared European regulatory hurdles and received a positive opinion from the EMA recommending approval.
Gene Therapy, Cell Therapy
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