BioAge lands $90 million; gears up for clinical trials in 2021

Company also appoints Chief Medical Officer as it prepares to enter the clinic with two Phase 2-ready therapeutic compounds that target aging pathways.

Longevity biotech firm BioAge Labs is readying itself for clinical trials after raising a whopping $90 million Series C funding round. The company revealed it will be moving its lead platform-derived therapies, BGE-117 and BGE-175, into Phase 2 clinical trials in the first half of 2021.

Longevity.Technology: As the developer of an AI platform that maps the molecular pathways impacting human Longevity, we’ve followed developments at BioAge with great interest. With two compounds ready to enter the clinic next year, and more on the way, this company is fast-becoming one of Longevity’s most exciting prospects.

The new funds will be used to develop BioAge’s portfolio of therapies for increasing healthspan and lifespan, as well as to augment its AI platform, and further expand its capabilities to test drug candidates in predictive models of human diseases of aging.

BioAge Labs’ headquarters in Richmond, California. Source: BioAge Labs

“These additional funds will support advancement of our systems biology and data-driven platform to map the key pathways that drive human aging and our pipeline of medicines that target these pathways to reverse or eradicate diseases and extend healthspan,” said BioAge co-founder and CEO Dr Kristen Fortney in a statement.

The new round brings the total amount of venture capital funding raised by BioAge to $127 million.

Speaking to Longevity.Technology, Fortney said that investors are showing “more and more enthusiasm for aging as a space.”

“I think there’s also appreciation of the fact that the space is ready to make some clinical bets,” she told us. “And we are not built around any one particular mechanism, and not any special mechanism that was discovered in a different species, like invertebrates. We’re a human discovery first platform with a portfolio of clinical stage bets, and I think that’s appealing to a lot of people.”

The oversubscribed round was co-led by Silicon Valley VC firm Andreessen Horowitz and serial entrepreneur, Elad Gil – both existing investors in the company.

“Drugs that target aging have potential to treat several morbid diseases and improve the lives of older adults,” said Gil. “BioAge has built a proprietary engine to analyze molecular signatures in aging populations, and to advance data-driven hypotheses to identify existing clinical-stage drugs that are ready for Phase 2 efficacy trials in age-related diseases.”

New investors include Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, AARP Foundation (through the RockCreek Impact Fund), and Phi-X Capital, the fund of genomics entrepreneur Mostafa Ronaghi, among others.

BioAge scientists at work in the lab. Source: BioAge

“BioAge is at the forefront of understanding scientific drivers of aging with its unique and cutting-edge systems biology platform,” said Vijay Pande, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz. “We believe their approach has the potential to unlock the underlying pathologies of many diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular disease, and frailty, that disproportionately affect older populations.”

BioAge also announced the appointment of veteran biopharmaceutical drug developer Paul Rubin, MD, as its chief medical officer. Having led development at companies including Sepracor, GSK and Abbott, Dr Rubin has been responsible for the clinical development and approval of more than ten products.

“The first two drugs from our pipeline are ready to begin Phase 2 trials in indications targeting serious conditions in elderly populations that presently have no good therapeutic options,” said Dr Rubin. “A key aspect of our strategy is to initiate efficient human clinical trials that will demonstrate that our drugs can address age-related deficiencies in acute conditions, which may expedite approval and serve as a gateway to the treatment of chronic diseases, resulting in healthy aging.”

Stay tuned for our exclusive interview with BioAge co-founder and CEO Dr Kristen Fortney tomorrow.

All images courtesy of BioAge Labs