Moderna Therapeutics Files for $500-Million IPO

By Akia Thorpe -

November 16, 2018

Moderna Therapeutics, a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based biotechnology company focusing on messenger RNA (mRNA) therapeutics, has filed a registration statement for an initial public offering with the US Securities and Exchange Commission with a target of raising $500 million.

mRNA therapeutics are a new class of medicines that directs the body’s cells to produce intracellular or secreted proteins that can have a therapeutic or preventive benefit. With its platform, Moderna is creating mRNA medicines and vaccines for a wide range of diseases and conditions, in many cases by addressing currently undruggable targets, for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases and cardiovascular diseases, through solely controlled programs and collaborations with strategic partners. The company has a pipeline of 21 programs, of which 10 have entered clinical studies and another three have open investigational new drug (IND) applications. The company is partnered with AstraZeneca for its most advanced (Phase II) program for treating ischemic heart disease. For the drug, Moderna says it is exploring how localized production of proteins has the potential to be used as a regenerative medicine for damaged tissues.

In addition to AstraZeneca, Moderna is partnered with Merck & Co., Vertex Pharmaceuticals and with government-sponsored and private organizations focused on global health initiatives, including the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. As of September 30, 2018, the company had raised over $2.6 billion in total funding from its collaborators and investors, and had cash, cash equivalents, and investments of $1.2 billion. Moderna has approximately 680 employees.

With the funding, Moderna has progressed its pipeline and established cGMP manufacturing. In July 2018, the company opened a 200,000-square-foot cGMP manufacturing facility in Norwood, Massachusetts. The site gives the company the capacity to develop materials for preclinical toxicology studies as well as Phase I and II clinical development programs, and to manufacture, test and run fill/finish operations for its portfolio of mRNA development candidates.

In addition to its facility in Norwood, Massachusetts, Moderna occupies a multi-building campus in Technology Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts with a mix of offices and research laboratory space totaling 190,712 square feet.

Source: Moderna Therapeutics