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Sangamo Therapeutics Cuts 40 Percent of US Workforce, Halts Investment Into Fabry Gene Therapy

NEW YORK – Sangamo Therapeutics is laying off around 40 percent of its US staff as the biopharmaceutical company hones its focus on genomic treatments within neurology.

The layoffs, announced at the same time as the company's third quarter financial results on Wednesday, will affect an estimated 162 employees. The layoffs and other cost reduction efforts, including plans to close its Brisbane, California, office and consolidate its headquarters in its Richmond, California, facility are expected to cut Sangamo's annual operating expenses by roughly 50 percent.

Sangamo also said it is pausing investment into its Fabry disease gene therapy and CAR-Treg work as it seeks collaboration partners or investors in both programs.

"The process of streamlining Sangamo's pipeline has been accelerated within today's challenging economic environment, and we have had to make difficult decisions," CEO Sandy Macrae said in a statement. "We continue to seek ways to raise additional capital to strengthen our financial foundation."

Sangamo expects to incur one-time restructuring costs in the fourth quarter in the range of $8 million to $10 million. However, the firm said it anticipates cost-cutting efforts to reduce its non-GAAP annual operating expenses from an expected $240 million to $260 million in 2023 to an expected $115 million to $135 million in 2024.

The company said its cash, cash equivalents, and marketable securities, which totaled $132.1 million as of Sept. 30, in conjunction with new cost savings, should fund its operations into the third quarter of next year.

As part of the business restructuring, D. Mark McClung, executive VP and chief operating officer, and Jason Fontenot, senior VP and CSO, will leave the company in January 2024. Their roles will be eliminated as part of Sangamo's move toward being a "streamlined and more focused organization," the company said in a statement.

Amy Pooler, VP of neuroscience, and Gregory Davis, VP of genome engineering design and technology, will take on new roles as head of research and head of technology, respectively.

Sangamo, which will remain headquartered in Brisbane through the end of 2023, posted $9.4 million in revenue for the third quarter, down 65 percent year over year, which the firm attributed in part to terminated collaboration agreements with Novartis and Biogen. Its net loss ballooned to $104.2 million, or $.59 per share, in Q3 compared to a loss of $53.2 million, or $.34 per share, in the comparable period of 2022.