Company Developing Tech to Identify Allosteric Mutations Raises Big Funds

Black Diamond Therapeutics receives $85 million in its Series B round.

Cambridge, Massachusetts–based Black Diamond Therapeutics is developing a technology platform to map tumor-agnostic allosteric mutations that drive cancer cells to develop inhibitors against current drugs. Allostery is a process by which proteins transmit the effect of binding at one site to another, often distal, functional site, allowing for regulation of activity.

Both allosteric and kinase domain mutations activate oncogenes, which are known to cause the growth of cancer cells. Identifying these mutations is necessary to develop drugs that can inhibit the activation of oncogenes. Kinase domain mutation inhibitors have become the standard of care for a number of different cancers, but allosteric mutations have not yet been explored.

Black Diamond is taking on the challenge and has a number of backers that believe in the technology. Follow an initial Series A funding round in which it raised $20 million from founding investor Versant Ventures, the company recently completed a successful Series B round, bringing in an additional $85 million from New Enterprise Associates and RA Capital Management, among others.

The funding will be used by Black Diamond to develop its pipeline candidates, which include allosteric HER2 and EGFR driver mutations that occur across a range of tissue type tumors, as well as other undisclosed programs. According to the company, its technology is designed to create precision medicines by isolating “druggable mutation baskets.”

 

 

 

David Alvaro, Ph.D.

David is Scientific Editorial Director for That’s Nice and the Pharma’s Almanac content enterprise, responsible for directing and generating industry, scientific and research-based content, including client-owned strategic content. Before joining That’s Nice, David served as a scientific editor for the multidisciplinary scientific journal Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. He received a B.A. in Biology from New York University and a Ph.D. in Genetics and Development from Columbia University.