Odyssey Therapeutics, a drug startup led by biotechnology entrepreneur Gary Glick, has reloaded with fresh funds, drawing on a roster of new investors that include General Catalyst and Fidelity.
On Thursday, Odyssey disclosed it raised $168 million in a Series B round, bringing its fundraising total to near $400 million since the company came together last year. The new cash will support a growing pipeline of drug candidates for cancer and inflammatory diseases, helping Odyssey complete the preliminary studies it needs to make the jump to clinical trials.
“The additional funds allow Odyssey both to broaden its portfolio and accelerate the pace of R&D,” Glick said in an email. “Also, given the near-term uncertainties in the capital markets, management and board felt that securing additional runway was prudent.”
Odyssey hasn’t yet disclosed exactly what it’s working on, but plans to reveal more next year.
“Strategically, Odyssey is focused on identifying targets and developing medicines where the cause of disease is well-validated, and where there is significant patient need,” Glick added.
Already, the company has eight research programs underway, involving both small molecule drugs as well as protein-based therapies. It plans to start its first human trial in 2024 and advance multiple other programs into clinical testing in 2025 and 2026.
Odyssey is the latest company launched by Glick, a chemist who previously founded Scorpion Therapeutics, IFM Therapeutics and Lycera. Glick left Scorpion in February 2021 and went to work soon after building Odyssey, which formally launched in December 2021 with a $218 million Series A round.
Like many other biotechs going after cancer and immune disease, Odyssey aims to develop targeted medicines that promise balancing greater efficacy with more tolerable side effects. It’s also using advanced computing techniques to better map out its drug development.
Glick has drawn a team of industry veterans to help lead the company, including Shifeng Pan from the Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation, who leads drug discovery. In May, former Vertex CEO Jeffrey Leiden joined as chairman of Odyssey’s board.
Odyssey’s ranks have quickly swelled as well, and its employees now number around 160, Glick said. Geographically, it is spread across locations in Cambridge, Massachusetts; Ann Arbor, Michigan; and Frankfurt, Germany.
Along with General Catalyst and Fidelity, seven other new investors participated in the Series B funding, as well as all eight of the original Series A investors.