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Xaira Therapeutics Launches to Revolutionize Medicine Through AI-Driven Drug Discovery and Development

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Xaira Therapeutics launched today with a mission to transform the landscape of medicine discovery and development using cutting-edge AI technologies from start to finish. Co-founded by ARCH Venture Partners and Foresite Labs, Xaira debuts with over $1 billion in committed capital from ARCH Venture Partners, Foresite Capital, F-Prime, NEA, Sequoia Capital, Lux Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Menlo Ventures, Two Sigma Ventures, PICI, Byers Capital, Rsquared, SV Angel, and other key investors.

Xaira integrates three essential elements: advanced machine learning research, extensive data generation for novel models, and robust therapeutic product development. With top-tier talent and capabilities in each domain, Xaira aims to construct a platform for drug discovery and development, propelling numerous drug programs forward and unraveling biological insights for future breakthroughs.

The company boasts significant AI research capabilities spanning foundational computational methods and their application to biological discovery, as well as the design of drug-like compounds and clinical development. Dr. David Baker, co-founder of Xaira and Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Washington School of Medicine, leads the team. Xaira's researchers, who originated the leading models for protein and antibody design, RFdiffusion and RFantibody, while in Dr. Baker’s lab, are advancing these models and crafting new methodologies to bridge biological targets and engineered molecules with disease manifestation.

Xaira's progress in biological machine learning is supported by its prowess in generating, integrating, and learning from extensive multidimensional datasets that comprehensively depict disease-relevant biology across all scales. The company's internal platforms incorporate leading technologies and personnel from Illumina’s functional genomics R&D efforts, along with a prominent proteomics group from Interline Therapeutics.

Under the guidance of seasoned drug developers, Xaira’s platform serves as the cornerstone of a robust therapeutic product development capability across various modalities. Leveraging its design prowess, Xaira targets previously challenging drug targets, laying the groundwork for a pipeline of distinctive therapeutics. Moreover, the platform is engineered to transform every laboratory and clinical experiment into a rich source of data, fueling the refinement of AI models and biological foundation models.

"We've reached a juncture where AI enables us to perceive biology through a new lens and translate these insights into improved disease treatments," remarked Robert Nelsen, Managing Director and Co-Founder of ARCH Venture Partners. "This presents a monumental opportunity to reimagine drug discovery entirely, making Xaira the largest initial funding commitment in ARCH's history."

Dr. Marc Tessier-Lavigne, renowned scientist and former Chief Scientific Officer of Genentech, leads Xaira as CEO. Supported by co-founder Dr. Hetu Kamisetty and executives Dr. Arvind Rajpal and Dr. Don Kirkpatrick, Xaira is poised to drive fundamental AI research forward and translate these advances into groundbreaking medicines.

With a board comprising distinguished scientists, accomplished company builders, and leaders from successful drug development enterprises and tech firms, Xaira aims to become a magnet for top AI and drug development talent. "Xaira promises to attract the best minds in AI and drug development," affirmed director Scott Gottlieb, former FDA commissioner and current NEA partner.



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