Finding the “Microprocessor” of Gene Therapy
Jonathan Thon, Ph.D. • December 2, 2022
“Gene therapy is the idea that you can cure a disease, versus just treating the symptoms,” opened Jonathan Thon, STRM.BIO CEO, at Breakout Venture’s Magnify event, held at the Pearl in San Francisco. In this lively session, Julia Moore, a Breakout Venture’s Managing Partner, sat down with Thon to discuss STRM.BIO and his take on the future of the field of gene therapy.
“The bottleneck in gene therapy today is not so much the therapies themselves — we have some really good ones,” Thon shared. “It’s the inability to deliver those therapies effectively that hinders the progression of the field.”
“If you think of gene therapy in the same way as the rise of the personal computer, we are really in the Intel moment,” he explained. “It’s very big and expensive right now and very few people have access to them. What’s needed — and what we’re working on — is the microprocessor; a form of delivering information more efficiently.”
But making the microprocessors isn’t enough. “We’re focusing on figuring out how we can make them accessible to the doctors and scientists who can use them to further their treatments.” Thon added: “The part that makes me most excited is the fact that we can go after a repeat dose,” he said. “We can go after one-and-done treatments, we can go ex-vivo, but we can also move in-vivo, and we can go after multiple targets at a time. It opens up the playing field for the impact we can make.”