Casma Therapeutics Named a 2019 “Fierce 15” Biotech Company

September 23, 2019

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., September 23, 2019 — Casma Therapeutics today announced that it has been named to the 2019 Fierce 15 list by FierceBiotech for its pioneering work to harness the potential of autophagy to design powerful new medicines. The award honors the most promising private biotechnology companies in the world.

Casma has built a robust product engine to identify and drug specific drivers of autophagy — the natural process that facilitates the degradation and recycling of dysfunctional or dysregulated proteins, aggregates, organelles or invading pathogens. By inducing autophagy, Casma aims to stop or reverse the progression of a number of diseases, including disorders of the muscle and liver, inflammatory disorders and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease. The company’s research into Parkinson’s is supported by a grant from the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.

“This is a pivotal moment for understanding the process of autophagy and applying our insights to create therapies that intervene in this process to improve human health,” said Keith Dionne, Ph.D., Casma’s chief executive officer. “Our approach has implications both for rare diseases that lack treatments and for broad disorders like Parkinson’s disease. We’re honored to be recognized by FierceBiotech for our innovative approach.”

“We are building an incredible biology and drug discovery team with the goal of bringing multiple new therapies to patients with severe and life-threatening medical needs,” said Leon Murphy, Ph.D., Casma’s chief scientific officer.  “FierceBiotech’s recognition that we are building the premier company in this relatively new area of drug development is gratifying to all of us at Casma.”

The Fierce 15 celebrates the spirit of being “fierce” — championing innovation and creativity, even in the face of intense competition. The winners are selected from among hundreds of private biotechs worldwide on the strength of their technology, partnerships, funding and competitive market position.

“This year has seen unrivalled scientific talent in the early-stage life sciences world,” said Ben Adams, senior editor of FierceBiotech. “Each company brought something different, exciting and potentially life-changing for myriad patients around the world.”


About Casma Therapeutics

Casma Therapeutics is harnessing the natural cellular process of autophagy to open vast new target areas for drug discovery and development. Casma uses several approaches to intervene at strategic points throughout the autophagy-lysosome system to improve the cellular process of clearing out unwanted proteins, aggregates, organelles and invading pathogens. By boosting autophagy, Casma expects to be able to arrest or reverse the progression of lysosomal storage disorders, muscle disorders, inflammatory disorders and neurodegeneration, among other indications. Casma was launched in 2018 by Third Rock Ventures and is based in Cambridge, Mass. For more information, please visit


About FierceBiotech

FierceBiotech is the biotech industry’s daily monitor, an email newsletter and web resource providing the latest biotech news, articles, and resources related to clinical trials, drug discovery, FDA approval, FDA regulation, patent news, pharma news, biotech company news and more. More than 150,000 top biotech professionals rely on FierceBiotech for an insider briefing on the day’s top stories. Signup is free at



Casma Media Contact:

 Stephanie Simon
Ten Bridge Communications

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