Mogrify Raises $3.7 Million to Accelerate Mission to Transform Cell Therapy Via Direct Cellular Conversion

Cell Mogrify Ltd (Mogrify) recently announced a second close on its seed funding, bringing the total raised to $3.7 million, and the appointment of Darrin M. Disley, PhD, DSc, OBE, as CEO. The company will use the funding to market novel IP and cell types generated using its proprietary direct cellular conversion platform, which will power the development and manufacture of life-saving cell therapies across all therapeutic areas. The funding round was led by existing investor Ahren Innovation Capital (Ahren), with 24Haymarket and Dr. Disley also investing.

Mogrify builds on a 10-year investment by its co-founders in the development of a systematic big data-science approach (Rackham et al., Nature Genetics, 2016) powered by next-generation sequencing and gene-regulatory data to identify the optimal combination of transcription factors (in vitro) or small molecules (in vivo), needed to convert any mature cell type into any other mature cell type without going through a pluripotent stem cell- or even a progenitor cell-state. The company is applying this approach to address the issues of efficacy, safety and scalability currently associated with cell therapy development and manufacturing, which is estimated to represent a $30-billion market opportunity and is rapidly growing (CAGR +30%). Further, through its internal development and partnership programs, the company is positioned to directly address growing markets that are unserved by approved cell therapies, such as cardiac repair and cartilage regeneration end-user markets, estimated to be worth $120 billion and $7 billion by 2022 and 2025, respectively.

Mogrify’s leadership team is of significant commercial and scientific caliber. The Company was founded by leading academics in bioinformatics, Professor Julian Gough (LMB, Cambridge, UK), cell reprograming, Professor Jose Polo (Monash University, Melbourne, AU), and machine learning, Assistant Professor Owen Rackham (Duke-NUS, Singapore), and is chaired by Professor Steve Jackson, FRS, Ahren Science Partner, originator of Olaparib/Lynparza, and University of Cambridge Professor of Biology.

Dr. Disley is a renowned scientist, entrepreneur, angel investor, and enterprise champion who has started, grown, or invested in over 40 start-up life science, technology and social enterprises, raising $500 million in business financing and closing $600 million in commercial deals. He was CEO of Horizon Discovery Group plc for 11 years, during which he led the company from start-up through a $113-million IPO, and rapid scale-up powered by multiple acquisitions of US peer companies to become a global market leader in gene editing and gene modulation technologies. He was appointed OBE in 2018 for his services to business and enterprise in the healthcare sector.