On July 6, 2023, Caribou Biosciences, Inc., a significant player in the field of CRISPR genome-editing biopharmaceuticals, announced a $25 million equity investment from Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE). Pfizer bought 4,690,431 Caribou common shares, aligning with a Securities Purchase Agreement dated June 29, 2023.
Sriram Krishnaswami Joins Caribou’s Scientific Advisory Board
Sriram Krishnaswami, PhD, vice president and development head for multiple myeloma at Pfizer Global Product Development, has been appointed to Caribou’s Scientific Advisory Board. The two companies are enthusiastic about their new partnership and the potential advancements in genome-editing technology and allogeneic cell therapies.
Caribou Biosciences Advancing Clinical Programs with Pfizer Investment
Caribou Biosciences plans to utilize the proceeds from Pfizer’s investment to advance the development of CB-011, an immune cloaked allogeneic CAR-T cell therapy currently under evaluation in the CaMMouflage Phase 1 clinical trial. This therapy is targeted at patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma.
About Caribou’s Lead Products CB-010, CB-011, and CB-012
Caribou Biosciences is leading in the development of CRISPR genome-edited therapies, with CB-010, CB-011, and CB-012 as its flagship allogeneic CAR-T cell therapy products. CB-010, an allogeneic anti-CD19 CAR-T cell therapy, is currently in the ANTLER Phase 1 trial, being evaluated for treating relapsed or refractory B cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Similarly, CB-011, the second product candidate, is an allogeneic anti-BCMA CAR-T cell therapy, under evaluation for patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma in the CaMMouflage Phase 1 trial. CB-012, the third product candidate, is in the investigational new drug (IND)-enabling studies phase and incorporates both checkpoint disruption and immune cloaking to improve antitumor activity.
Caribou’s Next-Generation CRISPR Platform
Caribou’s patented next-generation CRISPR technology platform employs Cas12a chRDNA genome editing for enhanced specificity of genome edits. Their CRISPR hybrid RNA-DNA guides, also known as chRDNAs, direct precise genome editing, significantly reducing off-target editing and potential harmful effects on cellular function and phenotype.
This major investment by Pfizer is a testament to Caribou Biosciences’ potential and the promise of their clinical programs. As the industry awaits updates on their programs over the next six months, Caribou continues to push the boundaries of the innovative use of CRISPR technology in the field of biopharmaceuticals.
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