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Ohio State Biotech Company Raises $59 Million

The Ohio State University

A biotechnology company with Ohio State roots raised $59 million to develop drug technology.

Entrada Therapeutics researches innovative ways to treat disease by delivering drugs to target cells.

Dehua Pei, an Ohio State biochemistry professor and the company’s cofounder, says the first application of the technology will focus on a rare and lethal mitochondrial disease with no approved treatment.

“The particular drug’s impact won’t be huge because this is a rare disease, and the number of patients who will benefit eventually from this drug is small,” Pei says.

He says the technology has been validated in mice, but that true success will come when it can help patients.

“The goal is in two to three years we hope to have this first drug tested in patients,” Pei says. “But that’s of course based on projections. As you know, research is unpredictable.”

The funding will allow Entrada to broaden its work on rare diseases involving single genes. Pei says approximately 80 percent of all drug targets are out of the reach of current drug development approaches.

“The ultimate proof of the technology is when you can bring a successful drug to the market,” Pei says. “Once that is demonstrated, then you open the door to many, many new drugs.”