Vilya Expands Series A Financing to $71 Million to Advance Computational Drug Design and Develop a New Class of Medicines

Vilya Expands Series A Financing to $71 Million to Advance Computational Drug Design and Develop a New Class of Medicines




Vilya Expands Series A Financing to $71 Million to Advance Computational Drug Design and Develop a New Class of Medicines

  • Founder and lead investor ARCH Venture Partners is joined by NVIDIA’s NVentures, Menlo Ventures, and Madrona
  • Funding accelerates advancement of Vilya’s proprietary computational drug design and development platform and its pipeline of novel macrocycles that precisely target disease biology
  • Vilya’s foundational technology leverages advanced computational approaches to design novel macrocycles with atomic-level accuracy and enhanced drug-like properties

SEATTLE, June 04, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — VILYA, Inc. (Vilya), a biotechnology company creating a new class of medicines that precisely target disease biology, announced today an expanded $71 million Series A financing. Founder and lead investor ARCH Venture Partners is joined by leading life science and technology funds, including NVIDIA’s venture capital arm NVentures, Menlo Ventures, Madrona, Lifeforce Capital, and Altitude Life Science Ventures.

“The support of these high-caliber investors will help us significantly enhance our generative AI platform, broadening the diversity of macrocycles we are able to design, synthesize and develop, in addition to broadening the targets we can design against,” said Cyrus Harmon, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer at Vilya. “This funding also extends our ability to rapidly advance our designed macrocycles to clinical development candidates.”

Vilya’s foundational technology leverages advanced computational approaches to design novel macrocycles with atomic-level accuracy and enhanced drug-like properties. A study published in Science last month validated the Company’s foundational drug discovery approach. Traditional discovery methods have relied on random screening and serendipity to identify drug candidates, only exploring a small fraction of the vast chemical space, and often yielding macrocyclic drugs with poor pharmacokinetic properties. With Vilya’s technology, the Company can precisely target disease biology in areas where innovative treatment approaches for patients are still needed.

Concurrent with this financing, Menlo Ventures’ Partner Greg Yap joined the Vilya board. According to Yap, “Vilya places groundbreaking AI technology in the hands of experienced drug developers to open up this valuable but difficult drug class. Vilya’s focus on macrocycles, and its high-throughput platform enables it to rapidly iterate from prediction and generation to testing of drug candidates, accelerating the development of lifesaving medicines and building proprietary training data to improve its AI platform.”

“The integration of generative AI into the biotech industry has led to groundbreaking discoveries,” said Mohamed “Sid” Siddeek, Corporate Vice President and Head of NVentures. “The Vilya team’s unique focus on using generative AI to design novel macrocycles presents an opportunity to impact patients positively.”

Vilya launched in 2022 and was co-founded by world-class scientists from the Institute of Protein Design (IPD) led by David Baker, Ph.D., and ARCH Venture Partners. The Company is building a world-class team with deep expertise in computational drug discovery that complements its extensive experience across drug design, chemistry, biology and clinical and corporate development. The leadership team includes Cyrus Harmon, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer; Katerina Leftheris, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer; Patrick Salveson, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer; and Inca Dieterich, Ph.D., Co-Founder and Vice President, Business Development.

About Vilya
Vilya is a computational biotechnology company creating a novel class of medicines to precisely target disease biology. The Company’s proprietary platform, powered by advanced machine learning and generative AI, taps into uncharted chemical space to design de novo molecular structures with enhanced drug-like properties that range in size between small molecules and antibodies. Vilya is leveraging its platform to focus on previously difficult-to-drug therapeutic targets. Vilya was co-founded by a team of scientists from the Institute of Protein Design (IPD) led by David Baker, Ph.D., and ARCH Venture Partners. The company has operations in Seattle and South San Francisco. To learn more, visit https://www.vilyatx.com and follow Vilya on LinkedIn.

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