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MRC Mitochondrial Biology Unit


The MBU Mitochondrial Genetics Programme Leader Michal Minczuk, with two other experts in mitochondrial gene regulation, Claes Gustafsson from the University of Gothenburg and Nils-Göran Larsson from Karolinska Institutet co-founded a new start-up company Pretzel Therapeutics.

Launched last month, Pretzel Therapeutics is backed by a world-class investor syndicate who injected capital into a $72.5 million Series A round. The financing was led by ARCH Venture Partners and Mubadala Capital with participating investors from Cambridge including Cambridge Innovation Capital and the University's knowledge and technology transfer body, Cambridge Enterprise. Other investors include HealthCap, Angelini Ventures, Google Ventures, Invus, Eir Ventures, GU Ventures, and Karolinska Institutet Holding.

The company aims to leverage expertise in mitochondrial molecular biology to advance novel treatments for both rare and common diseases, and platform technologies in gene correction, genome expression modulation, and mitochondrial quality control to enable wide variety of therapeutic approaches.

Pretzel’s genome correction therapeutics will utilise specialised gene-editing tools to reduce mutated mitochondrial DNA and increase the levels of healthy mitochondrial DNA, building on a Michal Minczuk’s previous mitochondrial genome engineering research.

Pretzel’s Scientific Advisory Board includes MBU’s Emeritus Director, John Walker. In addition to Drs Minczuk, Gustafsson and Larsson, founders Gabriel Martinez and Paul Thurk, played a formative role in the company’s creation based on their deep biotechnology industry expertise.

The company is headquartered in Waltham, MA and has research facilities in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Further information can be found in Pretzel's press release.