Cell Therapy
Collaborations, Mergers & Acquisitions

Castle Creek Bioscience Achieves $112.8 Million Financing to Advance Gene Therapies

Anna Osborne
26 May 2022
The late-stage cell and gene therapy company Castle Creek Biosciences has announced a $112.8 million preferred stock financing to advance the development and commercialization of gene therapies using their lentiviral platforms.

Castle Creek, a portfolio company of global life science leader Paragon Biosciences, use its two lentiviral vector delivery platforms, and in vivo and ex vivo gene switching technologies, for the development of novel genetic therapies to treat metabolic, skin, and connective tissue diseases.

“Castle Creek’s lentiviral platforms have the potential to unlock transformative gene therapies,” notes Jeff Aronin, Chairman of Castle Creek Biosciences.

These platforms provide the foundation to develop gene therapies to offer hope as potential curative treatments for patients of many genetic diseases that currently face limited, or no, treatment options.

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This financing should provide a sufficient level of capital for the Company to complete its Phase III study of their leading ex vivo product candidate, D-Fi, targeting the painful and progressive rare genetic skin disorder, recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (RDEB).

D-Fi is a cell-based gene therapy comprised of autologous fibroblasts genetically modified with a lentiviral vector to express the functional type VII collagen protein COL7, that is deficient in RDEB patients.

D-Fi is directly injected into wounds preventing the need for systematic treatment, and has previously achieved Orphan Drug, Rare Pediatric Disease, Fast Track and Regenerative Medicine Advanced Therapy designations.

The raised capital is also expected to contribute towards Castle Creek’s development of its first product using the in vivo gene therapy technology, LV-FAH.

This pre-clinical product is under investigation as a single-does treatment for the inherited liver disease hereditary tyrosinemia type 1 (HT1), that causes an accumulation of tyrosine and its metabolites in the liver.

Based on a lentiviral vector containing a functional copy of the human FAH gene encoding for the FAH enzyme, that is lacking in patients with HT1, LV-FAH is administered via the portal vein for transduction of, and delivery to the hepatocytes.

“Phase I/II data shows the lead ex vivo candidate corrects the genetic defect of the most burdensome RDEB wounds. Additionally, robust preclinical data suggest the initial in vivo therapy could set a precedent as a single-dose curative treatment for an inherited, metabolic liver disease,” adds Jeff Aronin, Chairman of Castle Creek Biosciences.

The financing saw Castle Creek gain continued support from Paragon Biosciences, Fidelity Management and Research Company, Valour Equity Partners, as well as seeing new participation from many other reputable health-care investors.

“This important investment acknowledges the long-term strategic potential of our versatile dual technology platform and in-house manufacturing capabilities, as well as our unwavering commitment to patient communities,” concludes Matthew Gantz, President and CEO of Castle Creek Biosciences.

Source: Castle Creek Bioscience

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