Platform insights are generating a growing pipeline of small molecule drugs and genetic therapeutics
Company will initially focus on oncology, fibrosis, and autoimmune disorders
CAMBRIGDE, Mass., May 18, 2022 – Flagship Pioneering, the bioplatform innovation company, today announced the unveiling of a new company – Sonata Therapeutics – to develop novel medicines for a wide range of serious diseases based on understanding and re-engineering the cellular microenvironment.
Despite the recognized importance of the microenvironment to biology and disease, the networks of its inputs, constituents, and targets have never been fully characterized or understood. Sonata’s product-platform creates drugs based on a systematic, comprehensive characterization of the microenvironment in diseases with high unmet medical need.
Through its pioneering science, Sonata identifies new targets for therapeutics that induce the release of a programmed diversity of signals that drive curative microenvironments. Sonata uses a combination of proprietary pharmacologic and genetic perturbations, high-throughput and co-culture assays, phenotypic analyses, and machine learning, to enable target discovery.
Sonata is generating a growing pipeline of small molecule drugs and genetic therapeutics. Currently, the company’s pipeline includes six preclinical programs that address a broad range of oncologic indications, as well as exploratory efforts in fibrosis and autoimmune disorders.
“Sonata is taking an exciting and innovative approach to unlocking the enormous value potential of the cellular microenvironment,” said Doug Cole, M.D., Managing Partner at Flagship and Chairman of Sonata’s Board of Directors. “It has the scale, technology, and team to translate the longstanding promise of the microenvironment into therapeutics that help patients with serious diseases.”
Sonata Therapeutics was formed by combining two Flagship companies, Inzen Therapeutics and Cygnal Therapeutics, and builds on each company’s pioneering work characterizing different inputs into the cellular microenvironment and their roles in causing disease, and developing therapeutic strategies based on these insights.
Noubar Afeyan, Ph.D., Flagship Pioneering Founder and CEO, added, “Flagship’s focus on pioneering breakthroughs in human health, is embodied in the groundbreaking work of both Inzen and Cygnal. As the companies grew and their science advanced, their shared vision to reprogram the cellular microenvironment became clear. Sonata combines the expertise, resources, and vision of both companies to build a single stronger entity.”
Former Inzen Chief Executive Officer, Volker Herrmann, M.D., has taken on the role of Sonata’s CEO. Former Cygnal CEO, Pearl Huang, Ph.D., recently announced her departure from the company to pursue new opportunities.
Volker Herrmann, M.D., Sonata CEO and Flagship Pioneering CEO-Partner added, “Remodeling the microenvironment requires the simultaneous control of a diversity of signals. Sonata Therapeutics’ unique approach harnesses these signals to develop curative treatments for serious diseases. I look forward to overseeing and accelerating Sonata’s growth and its transformative approach to medicine.”
About Sonata Therapeutics
Sonata Therapeutics is revolutionizing the world’s understanding of the cellular microenvironment and its importance to human biology and disease. The company's product-platform creates drugs based on a systematic, comprehensive characterization of the microenvironment in diseases with high unmet medical need. Through its pioneering science, Sonata identifies new targets for therapeutics that induce the release of a programmed diversity of signals that drive curative microenvironments. Founded in 2022 by Flagship Pioneering, Sonata is generating a growing pipeline of small molecule drugs and genetic therapeutics, with preclinical programs that address a broad range of oncologic indications, as well as exploratory efforts in fibrosis and autoimmune disorders. For more information, visit SonataTx.com.
About Flagship Pioneering
Flagship Pioneering conceives, creates, resources, and develops first-in-category bioplatform companies to transform human health and sustainability. Since its launch in 2000, the firm has, through its Flagship Labs unit, applied its unique hypothesis-driven innovation process to originate and foster more than 100 scientific ventures, resulting in more than $100 billion in aggregate value. To date, Flagship has deployed over $2.9 billion in capital toward the founding and growth of its pioneering companies alongside more than $19 billion of follow-on investments from other institutions. The current Flagship ecosystem comprises 41 transformative companies, including Axcella Therapeutics (Nasdaq: AXLA), Codiak BioSciences (Nasdaq: CDAK) Denali Therapeutics (Nasdaq: DNLI), Evelo Biosciences (Nasdaq: EVLO), Foghorn Therapeutics (Nasdaq: FHTX), Indigo Ag, Moderna (Nasdaq: MRNA), Omega Therapeutics (Nasdaq: OMGA), Rubius Therapeutics (Nasdaq: RUBY), Sana Biotechnology (Nasdaq: SANA), Seres Therapeutics (Nasdaq: MCRB), and Sigilon Therapeutics (Nasdaq: SGTX).