SwanBio, based on research at Harvard Medical School, has secured a $20m extension to bring its series A round to $45m so far, with commitments to increase it to $77m.

SwanBio Therapeutics, a US-based neurological gene therapy developer based on Harvard University research, is set to increase its series A funding to $77m with a $52m extension led by founding investor and life sciences investment trust Syncona.
Syncona has provided an initial $19.6m tranche, a spokesperson revealed to GUV, while Partners Innovation Fund – a vehicle for health system Partners Healthcare that includes Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) – also contributed to bring the extension to $20m so far.
The remainder of Syncona’s commitment – amounting to a total of $51m – is dependent on milestones. The trust will own a 78.6% stake once its investment closes in full.
Syncona had invested $23m to lead SwanBio’s initial $25m series A tranche in June 2018 with participation from Partners Innovation Fund.
Founded in 2018, SwanBio Therapeutics is working on drugs for treating serious neurological diseases that exploit viral vectors to deposit therapeutic genes directly into the patient’s central nervous system.
SwanBio’s lead candidate targets adrenomyeloneuropathy, a rare inheritable neurological disorder that can cause impaired mobility, eyesight and hearing. No approved treatments currently exist for the disease.
The series A funding will facilitate pre-clinical work on the drug while also enabling SwanBio to broaden its pipeline and ramp up manufacturing capacity. SwanBio also expects to source new executives for its leadership team.
The spinout’s founding team includes Florian Eichler, an associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School and assistant in neurology, director of the leukodystrophy clinic and director of the Center for Rare Neurological Diseases at MGH.
MGH and Brigham Women’s Hospital are both teaching hospitals affiliated with Harvard Medical School.