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Record $15 Billion SPAC Merger Just Happened For A Technology You’ve Never Heard Of

(September 17, 2021)

Today, Ginkgo Bioworks, a synthetic biology company with a goal of programming microbes as easily as one might programming computers, announced it will go public with a $15 billion pre-money valuation by merging with Soaring Eagle Acquisition, a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). Ginkgo’s $15 billion pre-money equity valuation is one of the largest SPAC deals in history. Appropriately, the company plans to trade under the ticker symbols, $DNA

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(September 14, 2021)

AgBiome’s Best-in-Class Microbial Platform Delivers Crop Protection Solutions to Feed the Growing Population Responsibly

Research Triangle Park, NC — September 14, 2021 — AgBiome, the leader in developing innovative products from the Earth’s microbial communities, announced it has raised $116 million in an oversubscribed Series D round of funding, co-led by Blue Horizon and Novalis LifeSciences and that included multiple new and existing investors. The company will use the capital to expand more rapidly its product portfolio, scale its scientific and commercial teams, and continue to build its global presence and partnerships.

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Plant-Based Biologics All the Rage as Lumen Partners with Google

(August 11, 2021 )

Lumen Bioscience partnered with Google to use machine learning to advance the development of plant-based biologic drugs. The companies will harness the power of machine learning to increase the scalability of medicines based on spirulina, a type of blue-green algae.

Lumen’s approach allows for the “rapid and low-cost mass production of new biologic drugs at a small fraction of the cost of traditional batch-fermentation technologies,” according to data.

The machine learning research buoyed by Google, which has been supported in part by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is expected to provide a method to “short-cut the productivity improvement process” that took years for the production of older biomanufacturing platforms that included yeast, E. coli, and CHO cells.

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Seres Therapeutics, Nestlé Health Science Announce SER-109
Co-Commercialization License Agreement

(July 1, 2021 )

    • Companies Agree to Jointly Commercialize SER-109 Investigational Microbiome Therapeutic to Treat Recurrent C. difficile Infection, Leading the Way for Entirely New Treatment Modality
    • Deal calls for more than $500 million in upfront and contingent milestone payments
    • Seres Therapeutics to conduct a conference call at 8:30 a.m. ET


CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & LAUSANNE, Switzerland – (BUSINESS WIRE) – Seres Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: MCRB), a leading microbiome therapeutics company, announced today that it has entered into an agreement with Nestlé Health Science to jointly commercialize SER-109, Seres’ investigational oral microbiome therapeutic for recurrent Clostridioides difficile infection (CDI), in the United States (U.S.) and Canada. If approved, SER-109 would become the first-ever FDA-approved microbiome therapeutic.

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Accelerator Life Science Partners’ Portfolio Company Lodo Therapeutics Acquired by Zymergen Inc.

(May 28, 2021)

SEATTLE – (BUSINESS WIRE) – Accelerator Life Science Partners (“ALSP”), a leading early-stage life science accelerator and investment firm, today announced that its portfolio company, Lodo Therapeutics Corporation (“Lodo” or the “Company”), has been acquired by Zymergen Inc. (NASDAQ: ZY) for an undisclosed amount. The transaction is the third exit from ALSP’s investment fund, Accelerator Life Science Partners I (ALSP I), in the last year.

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Synbio Powerhouse Ginkgo Bioworks Goes Public in $17.5B SPAC Deal

Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (May 11, 2021)

Synthetic biology powerhouse Ginkgo Bioworks said today it will become a public company through a $17.5 billion merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) that is expected to provide up to $2.5 billion of gross cash proceeds.

The SPAC business combination with Soaring Eagle Acquisition Corp. implies a pre-money equity valuation of $15 billion for Ginkgo, the company said. Soaring Eagle will change its name to Ginkgo Bioworks Holdings, change its jurisdiction of formation to Delaware and change its ticker symbol from SRNG to a new symbol.

Ginkgo was launched in 2008 by co-founders who have worked together for close to 20 years since meeting at MIT, with the goal of developing a platform that could program cells as easily as computers across a wide variety of applications—including food, agriculture, industrial chemicals, and pharmaceuticals.

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Vedanta Biosciences Announces $25 Million Investment from Pfizer Inc.

(Jan 12, 2021)

Michael Vincent, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer, Inflammation & Immunology Research Unit at Pfizer, to join Vedanta’s Scientific Advisory Board

CAMBRIDGE, January 12, 2021 – Vedanta Biosciences, a leading clinical-stage company developing a new category of therapies for immune-mediated diseases based on rationally defined consortia of human microbiome-derived bacteria, today announced that Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) has made a $25 million investment in Vedanta, as part of the Pfizer Breakthrough Growth Initiative.

Vedanta intends to use the proceeds to fund a Phase 2 study of VE202 in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which it plans to initiate in 2021. Topline Phase 1 study data showed VE202 was generally safe and well-tolerated at all doses and demonstrated durable and dose-dependent colonization.

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Gilead Sciences to Acquire Kite Pharma for $11.9 Billion

(August 28, 2017)

– Immediately Positions Gilead as a Leader in Cell Therapy –

– Kite’s Lead CAR T Therapy Candidate, Axicabtagene Ciloleucel, Under Priority Review in the U.S. and Expedited Review in the EU –

– Provides Broad Pipeline in Hematologic Malignances and Solid Tumors and Robust Platform for Continued Innovation –

– Leverages Gilead’s Expertise in Rapidly Advancing Therapies to Address Unmet Patient Needs –

FOSTER CITY, Calif. & SANTA MONICA, Calif. – (BUSINESS WIRE) – Gilead Sciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: GILD) and Kite Pharma, Inc. (Nasdaq: KITE) announced today that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement pursuant to which Gilead will acquire Kite for $180.00 per share in cash. The transaction, which values Kite at approximately $11.9 billion, was unanimously approved by both the Gilead and Kite Boards of Directors and is anticipated to close in the fourth quarter of 2017. The transaction will provide opportunities for diversification of revenues, and is expected to be neutral to earnings by year three and accretive thereafter.

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