Harnessing the Power of Genetics: George Church-Backed Thymmune Launches to Tackle Overlooked Organ Issues

George Church, the renowned geneticist, has launched a new venture that is developing cell therapies to regenerate the thymus, enabling the body to restore and improve its immune system. With this cutting-edge approach, people can look forward to a healthier future.

Thymmune Therapeutics made a splashy debut Wednesday, launching with an impressive $7 million seed financing. The funds are set to propel the company forward as it looks to make its mark in the biotech space.

A Boston-based start-up has just been backed by the venture capital firm Pillar VC, leading a financing round that saw participation from several other institutional and personal investors, including the New York Blood Center’s NYBC Ventures, former Alnylam CEO John Maraganore, and Church. This is a major step forward for the Mass.-based business, which is ready to take on the world.

Thymmune, founded in 2019, has its roots in years of groundbreaking research on the thymus gland. Spearheaded by Stan Wang, M.D., Ph.D., the company’s founder and CEO, Thymmune promises to revolutionize the health care industry. Wang was a member of the Church lab at Harvard Medical School from 2016 to 2018 and is now dedicated to realizing the full potential of Thymmune’s innovative approach to health and wellness.

Thymmune Technologies is proud to announce the addition of their new CEO, Jeff Wang. He brings extensive experience in the biotechnology industry and has held leadership positions at Sana Biotechnology and Merck. Joining him at the company’s helm is Chief Scientific Officer Bing Lim, M.D., Ph.D., who has held senior roles at Sana Biotechnology, Merck and Singapore’s A*STAR. With a total of eight employees, Thymmune is taking strides to advance their cutting-edge scientific research and development.

In 2021, Thymmune made a splash in the Boston life sciences start-up scene by setting up shop in Kendall Square in Cambridge and winning a record-breaking five Golden Tickets from big sponsors such as Pfizer, Novo Nordisk, LG Chem Life Sciences, Boehringer Ingelheim and Astellas. These tickets are awarded to promising early-stage life-sciences start-ups, and their award to Thymmune is a testament to the company’s potential.

Targeting the Thymus

The thymus is an essential organ situated beneath the breastbone, playing an integral role in the body’s immune system. Its purpose is to create T cells, which are vital in fighting off infections, diseases and responding to vaccinations. Unfortunately, as we age, the thymus begins to weaken and is no longer able to produce a sufficient amount of naïve T cells, leading to a decrease in immunity and an increased risk of chronic illnesses.

Thymmune is revolutionizing the healthcare industry with its innovative approach to restoring immune function. By combining machine learning with cellular engineering, the start-up is utilizing induced pluripotent stem cells to mass produce thymic cells and create off-the-shelf cell therapies that restore immune function with minimal invasiveness. With this groundbreaking technology, Thymmune is transforming the way we approach immune health.

By leveraging a revolutionary approach, we have the potential to revolutionize immunology and create life-changing treatments for patients with various immune system disorders. Our work promises to make an impact on the lives of many and has the potential to be a true game-changer in the world of immunology.

A small team is taking on a daunting task; they are testing their platform against athymia, a rare and congenital immune disorder. Babies born with athymia have no functioning thymus, leaving them unable to produce T cells and at a high risk of infection. Time is of the essence in this battle, as untreated athymic infants typically die by the age of two or three. It’s a race against the clock for this team as they strive to find a solution.

Thomas de Vlaam, Principal of Pillar VC, predicted that Thymmune’s platform could revolutionize health and wellness by boosting immune function and addressing the biology of aging in the future.

Thymmune is the latest addition to the growing roster of biotech start-ups spun out from Harvard’s Church lab. Led by Professor George Church, the lab has already given birth to such innovative companies as Colossal Biosciences – which is dedicated to de-extinction – Manifold Bio, a protein barcoding start-up, and Rejuvenate Bio, focused on the science of aging.

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