Signal Genetics and Miragen Therapeutics have agreed to merge to focus on developing microRNA-targeted clinical product candidates addressing hematological malignancies and pathological fibrosis and preclinical product candidates addressing cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases.

In conjunction with the proposed merger, an investor syndicate of existing miRagen investors and new investors has committed to invest approximately $40 million in miRagen. The total cash balance of the combined company upon the closing of the proposed merger and the financing is expected to exceed $50 million.

“We believe microRNA targeting therapeutics have the potential to address complex diseases with high unmet medical need, and miRagen will be well positioned to execute on our programs,” said William S. Marshall, president and CEO of miRagen. “We believe proceeds from the concurrent financing will allow us to advance our lead assets in hematological malignancy and pathological fibrosis into later-stage clinical evaluation.”

The merger has already been approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is expected to close early next year. The directors and executive officers of Signal will resign from their positions with Signal upon the closing of the proposed merger, and the combined company will be under the leadership of miRagen’s current executive management team, with Mr. Marshall serving as president and CEO.