Orna Therapeutics, a circular RNA therapeutics-focused biotechnology company, has acquired RNA medicines developer ReNAgade Therapeutics.

The financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

ReNAgade Therapeutics aims to use RNA therapies for treating diseases throughout the body using its RNA delivery platforms.

The acquisition combines Orna Therapeutics’ circular RNA and ReNAgade’s delivery technologies to advance a new category of panCAR in vivo CAR RNA medicines for oncology and autoimmune ailments.

The combined entity will have a pipeline encompassing panCAR programs targeting oncology and autoimmune disease, vaccine initiatives in collaboration with Merck, and genetic disease programmes.

Amit Munshi, the current CEO of ReNAgade Therapeutics, will be the CEO of the enlarged Orna Therapeutics, succeeding Tom Barnes.

Barnes will remain on the board of directors and chair the scientific advisory board.

Munshi said: “This strategic acquisition unifies Orna’s and ReNAgade’s strengths and capabilities under one roof, expanding technological synergies and multiplying the companies’ depth and breadth of expertise to drive a unique RNA therapeutic-focused R&D engine.

“Orna will now advance an industry-leading approach combining the Company’s circular RNA expression technology with ReNAgade’s broad portfolio of LNP-based RNA delivery systems and comprehensive editing programs to solve the most pressing challenges in drug development.”

Based in Massachusetts, ReNAgade Therapeutics integrates RNA delivery platforms with an RNA platform to develop an all-RNA system capable of coding, editing, and inserting genes for the formulation of innovative medications.

Orna Therapeutics was launched with a $100m Series A financing round in February 2021, followed by a $221m Series B funding in August 2022.

ReNAgade Therapeutics, on the other hand, was launched in May 2023 with a Series A financing of $300m.

Barnes said: “Orna remains singularly focused on developing the right tools and technologies and building the right company to power an entirely new class of RNA-based medicines.

“The combination of technologies positions Orna to advance best-in-class panCAR in vivo CAR RNA therapies and expand existing gene editing delivery solutions with circular RNA to address the massive unmet need in multiple diseases.”