Starna Therapeutics, a Chinese firm focusing on the research and development of new mRNA drugs, recently announced the completion of round-A financing totaling 150 million yuan ($22.1 million). The lead investor was LYFE Capital, while co-investors were Source Code Capital, Hony Capital and Primavera Venture Partners, as well as existing shareholders GL Ventures and Sherpa Healthcare Partners.
This is the second round of financing completed by the company within one year after it secured angel investment in December 2021. The recently acquired funds are intended to help expand the firm’s R&D center, build pilot workshops, promote research pipelines, and further improve extrahepatic delivery technology to broaden the application prospects of mRNA drugs.
Starna Therapeutics, founded in August 2021, was established by individuals with profound experience of industrial technology and management in the fields of delivery technology and nucleic acid therapy, both within China and abroad. The company has established a technical platform for mRNA design and synthesis, and LNP delivery with independent intellectual property rights, and aims to realize tissue-specific mRNA drug delivery. Guided by unmet clinical needs, the company has developed internationally competitive mRNA innovative drugs.
MRNA vaccines have shown many technical advantages in the COVID-19 pandemic, such as fast R&D, strong protection and low production costs. In addition, mRNA drugs are expected to be applied in tumors, rare diseases and other fields.
Hu Rongkuan, Chairman and CEO of the company, said: “In the future, Starna Therapeutics will continue to build a core platform with international competitiveness around ‘RNA and delivery technology’, further accelerate the development of product pipelines, and actively promote cooperation at home and abroad.”