Ginkgo Bioworks Acquires Modulus Therapeutics' Cell Therapy Assets to Strengthen Next-Gen CAR Designs

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Ginkgo Bioworks (NYSE: DNA) acquires Modulus Therapeutics' cell therapy platform assets, enhancing cell therapy capabilities. Modulus' CAR and switch receptor libraries improve control and performance of immune cell-based therapies, potentially increasing safety and efficacy. Ginkgo aims to support customers in developing T-cell and NK-cell based CAR therapies for various diseases.
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The acquisition of Modulus Therapeutics' assets by Ginkgo Bioworks represents a strategic move within the biotech industry, particularly in the cell therapy segment. By integrating Modulus' cell therapy platform assets, including their CAR and switch receptor libraries, Ginkgo is poised to enhance its capabilities in designing cell therapies that could potentially lead to more effective treatments for solid tumors, autoimmune diseases and other serious conditions.

From an industry perspective, this move indicates a consolidation trend where companies with specialized technologies are being acquired to strengthen the acquirer's portfolio and market position. For Ginkgo, this could mean a competitive advantage in the rapidly growing field of cell therapy. The focus on CAR-NK and CAR-T components that perform better even in challenging environments could translate into therapies with higher success rates, which is a significant step forward in oncology and immunotherapy.

For stakeholders, the acquisition could signal confidence in Ginkgo's future performance and its commitment to innovation. However, the success of this integration will hinge on the seamless assimilation of Modulus' technologies into Ginkgo's existing infrastructure and the realization of synergies that can expedite the development of new therapies. The long-term impact on Ginkgo's financials will depend on the effective commercialization of the acquired assets and the outcomes of clinical trials utilizing these new technologies.

The announcement of Ginkgo Bioworks acquiring Modulus Therapeutics' cell therapy assets is likely to have implications for Ginkgo's financial performance. Investors and analysts should monitor the cost of acquisition, the potential for revenue growth from new cell therapies and how this acquisition might affect Ginkgo's R&D expenses in the short to medium term.

Considering the emphasis on the development of CAR therapies, which are at the forefront of cancer treatment, there is a significant market opportunity for Ginkgo. If the integration of Modulus' assets leads to breakthroughs in the treatment of solid tumors or autoimmune diseases, it could open up substantial revenue streams. On the flip side, the costs associated with the development and clinical trials could weigh on the company's financials until these therapies are commercialized.

Investors should also consider the potential for Ginkgo to establish strategic partnerships or licensing agreements as a result of this acquisition. Such deals could provide upfront cash inflows and future royalties, which would be positive for cash flow and profitability. The market's reaction to this news will be an indicator of investor sentiment regarding the potential of cell therapies and Ginkgo's position within this space.

The acquisition of Modulus Therapeutics by Ginkgo Bioworks is noteworthy for the potential impact on the development of novel cell therapies. Modulus' expertise in creating libraries of NK-specific and T-cell specific CAR and switch receptor designs could lead to the development of therapies with improved safety profiles and efficacy. This is particularly important in the context of treating diseases like cancer where the therapeutic window is narrow and the balance between effectiveness and safety is critical.

From a medical research standpoint, the ability to control the activation and targeting of immune cells is a game-changer. It allows for a more personalized approach to treatment, which can lead to better patient outcomes. The emphasis on enhancing proliferation and cytotoxicity of immune cells even in challenging environments could also mean that these therapies might be effective against more aggressive or resistant forms of disease.

It's important to monitor how these assets will be leveraged in ongoing and future clinical trials. The integration of these technologies into Ginkgo's platform could potentially accelerate the discovery and development process, bringing these therapies to market more quickly. The long-term implications for patient care and the overall healthcare system could be significant if these therapies prove to be more effective than current options.

BOSTON, April 2, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Ginkgo Bioworks (NYSE: DNA), which is building the leading platform for cell programming and biosecurity, announced the acquisition of Modulus Therapeutics' cell therapy platform assets, including their chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) and switch receptor libraries.

Modulus Therapeutics is a cell engineering company focused on the design of next-generation cell therapies for autoimmune diseases. In contrast to legacy cell therapy design, the company uses a combinatorial approach to build and screen cell therapy components that work in concert with one another to yield novel cell behaviors.

Modulus has used its platform to develop and screen libraries of novel NK-specific and T-cell specific CAR and switch receptor designs, which enable improved control and performance of immune cell-based therapies. This technology has the potential to improve the safety and efficacy of cell therapies by allowing for more precise control over activation and targeting. Modulus' CAR-NK and CAR-T components are designed to enhance proliferation and cytotoxicity, even in inhospitable cellular environments, providing a deeper and more durable response against target cells.

Modulus' assets complement Ginkgo's extensive cell therapy capabilities. With this addition, Ginkgo looks forward to supporting its customers who are improving the performance of T-cell and NK-cell based CAR therapies to treat solid tumors, autoimmune, and other diseases.

Jason Kelly, CEO and co-founder of Ginkgo Bioworks: "Modulus Therapeutics has built an array of incredible cell therapy assets that we are excited to add into the significant cell therapy capabilities Ginkgo has developed to date. Modulus' CAR and switch receptor designs and libraries seamlessly integrate into our existing infrastructure and offerings. We are excited to put these new assets to work for our customers and contribute to the transformative advancements in CAR and cell therapies."

Max Darnell, CEO and co-founder of Modulus Therapeutics: "At Modulus, we have always been motivated by enhancing access to cutting-edge cell therapy innovation. We're very pleased that Ginkgo Bioworks shares this commitment and can leverage our technology to help transform oncology and autoimmune cell therapies. We are thrilled to contribute our innovative designs to the Ginkgo ecosystem, and look forward to seeing these tools deployed across a range of Ginkgo-partnered programs."

Ginkgo's platform works to enable its partners to sample CAR domains with a variety of functional roles and structural positions, sourced from diverse immune cell types. This approach to cell therapy discovery allows partners to thoroughly sample the breadth of therapeutic activities a CAR can produce. Last year, Ginkgo entered a partnership with the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) to discover and develop next-generation CAR-T cell therapies. Ginkgo also presented new data on its high throughput pooled screening method to discover novel CAR-T designs for solid tumors at the 37th Annual Meeting of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) in 2022, as well as data on its high-throughput screening platform for chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) libraries at the 26th American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy (ASGCT) Annual Meeting in 2023. The poster highlighted Ginkgo's Foundry-enabled methods for large-scale, combinatorial library design and screening of CAR domains for improved persistence. Ginkgo expects Modulus' cell therapy assets to help Ginkgo continue to strengthen its CAR-T research & development offerings.

Learn more about Ginkgo Cell Therapy Services here.

About Ginkgo Bioworks

Ginkgo Bioworks is the leading horizontal platform for cell programming, providing flexible, end-to-end services that solve challenges for organizations across diverse markets, from food and agriculture to pharmaceuticals to industrial and specialty chemicals. Ginkgo's biosecurity and public health unit, Concentric by Ginkgo, is building global infrastructure for biosecurity to empower governments, communities, and public health leaders to prevent, detect and respond to a wide variety of biological threats. For more information, visit and, read our blog, or follow us on social media channels such as X (@Ginkgo and @ConcentricByGBW), Instagram (@GinkgoBioworks), Threads (@GinkgoBioworks) or LinkedIn.



About Modulus Therapeutics

Modulus is engineering next-generation immune cell therapies. By leveraging modern molecular engineering tools, deployed in a cell therapy-specific context, Modulus is rewiring immune cells to achieve unique sense-and-respond capabilities without the need for synthetic gene circuits. Modulus is focused on novel context-responsive CAR-NK cells in autoimmunity that feed themselves off of the autoimmune microenvironment for enhanced safety and efficacy. For more information, find us on LinkedIn.


Forward-Looking Statements of Ginkgo Bioworks

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws, including statements regarding the capabilities and potential success of the acquisition and Ginkgo's cell programming platform. These forward-looking statements generally are identified by the words "believe," "can," "project," "potential," "expect," "anticipate," "estimate," "intend," "strategy," "future," "opportunity," "plan," "may," "should," "will," "would," "will be," "will continue," "will likely result," and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are predictions, projections and other statements about future events that are based on current expectations and assumptions and, as a result, are subject to risks and uncertainties. Many factors could cause actual future events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements in this press release, including but not limited to: (i) volatility in the price of Ginkgo's securities due to a variety of factors, including changes in the competitive and highly regulated industries in which Ginkgo operates and plans to operate, variations in performance across competitors, and changes in laws and regulations affecting Ginkgo's business, (ii) the ability to implement business plans, forecasts, and other expectations, and to identify and realize additional business opportunities, (iii) the risk of downturns in demand for products using synthetic biology, (iv) the uncertainty regarding the demand for passive monitoring programs and biosecurity services, (v) changes to the biosecurity industry, including due to advancements in technology, emerging competition and evolution in industry demands, standards and regulations, (vi) the outcome of any pending or potential legal proceedings against Ginkgo, (vii) our ability to realize the expected benefits from and the success of our Foundry platform programs, (viii) our ability to successfully develop engineered cells, bioprocesses, data packages or other deliverables, and (ix) the product development or commercialization success of our customers. The foregoing list of factors is not exhaustive. You should carefully consider the foregoing factors and the other risks and uncertainties described in the "Risk Factors" section of Ginkgo's annual report on Form 10-K filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") on February 29, 2024 and other documents filed by Ginkgo from time to time with the SEC. These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Readers are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements, and Ginkgo assumes no obligation and does not intend to update or revise these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Ginkgo does not give any assurance that it will achieve its expectations.

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What did Ginkgo Bioworks announce regarding Modulus Therapeutics?

Ginkgo Bioworks announced the acquisition of Modulus Therapeutics' cell therapy platform assets, including their CAR and switch receptor libraries.

What is Modulus Therapeutics known for?

Modulus Therapeutics is known for designing next-generation cell therapies for autoimmune diseases using a combinatorial approach.

How do Modulus' assets complement Ginkgo's capabilities?

Modulus' assets enhance Ginkgo's cell therapy capabilities, particularly in developing T-cell and NK-cell based CAR therapies for various diseases.

What is the potential impact of Modulus' technology on cell therapies?

Modulus' technology has the potential to improve the safety and efficacy of cell therapies by enabling more precise control over activation and targeting.

Who are the CEOs of Ginkgo Bioworks and Modulus Therapeutics?

The CEO and co-founder of Ginkgo Bioworks is Jason Kelly, and the CEO and co-founder of Modulus Therapeutics is Max Darnell.

Ginkgo Bioworks Holdings, Inc.


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the organism company ginkgo bioworks engineers new organisms to solve challenges across a range of industries from fuels to pharmaceutical production. our biological engineers make use of an in-house pipeline of synthetic biology technologies to design, build, and test new organisms.