|[March 16, 2017]
Cell Medica: �60 Million Series C Financing to Advance Multiple Cancer Programmes
Cell Medica (or 'the Company'), a leading cellular immunotherapy
company, has closed a �60 million Series C investment round with
participation from existing investors Touchstone (News - Alert) Innovations, funds
managed by Invesco Perpetual, and funds managed by Woodford Investment
Cell Medica will use the investment capital to continue to progress its
three proprietary technology platforms for cell-based immunotherapy
products. The Company's lead oncology product, baltaleucel-T (CMD-003),
is currently under investigation in the CITADEL Phase 2 clinical trial
for the treatment of patients with advanced lymphomas associated with
the Epstein Barr virus. Comprised of the patient's own immune cells,
baltaleucel-T offers the potential for a targeted approach to cancer
treatment with very limited side effects or toxicities. The US FDA
granted fast track designation to baltaleucel-T in February 2017 in
recognition of the product's potential to address an important unmet
Over the last year, Cell Medica has significantly expanded its
technology base through two strategic collaborations and the acquisition
of Delenex Therapeutics. The Company has established a product
development partnership with Baylor College of Medicine to develop
genetically engineered chimeric antigen receptors (CARs) to reprogramme
human immune cells to recognise and kill cancer cells while also
preventing cancer escape mechanisms. This extensive partnership will
explore the use of NKT cells, a powerful class of immune cells, to
target solid tumors. This approach may also allow the use of an
allogeneic off-the-shelf cell product to increase the convenience and
reduce the manufacturing cost of cell-based immunotherapy treatments.
The Delenex Therapeutics acquisition has provided Cell Medica with an
in-house technology platform to generate antibody fragments (scFvs)
which enable CAR-NKT products to target new cancer antigens. The Delenex
know-how also provides the capability to engineer immune cells to
secrete blocking antibodies which prevent cancer cells from triggering
inhibition pathways to down-regulate the immune response.
Cell Medica has also partnered with University College London (UCL) to
develop a new approach to improve the expression of T cell receptors
(TCRs) which naturally recognize cancer markers. Referred to as the
Dominant TCR technology, this greatly increases the number of
cancer-detecting TCRs expressed on human T cells, thereby enhancing the
natural potency of these cells.
Gregg Sando, Cell Medica's Chief Executive Officer, commented:
"With the strong support of our key shareholders, Cell Medica will
implement the next phase of our development programme, bringing a new
generation of cell-based immunotherapy products into Phase 1 clinical
trials as well as completing our Phase 2 programme for baltaleucel-T.
This funding enables us to continue our efforts to unlock the full
potential of cellular immunotherapy for the benefit of cancer patients."
About Cell Medica
Cell Medica is a cellular therapeutics company engaged in the
development, manufacturing and marketing of cellular immunotherapy
products for the treatment of cancer. Cellular immunotherapy is a novel
form of medical treatment which has the potential to transform the
treatment of cancer in the years ahead. Cell Medica is developing a
range of cell-based immunotherapy products using three proprietary
technology platforms including activated cytotoxic T cells, chimeric
antigen receptors (CARs) and engineered T cell receptors (TCRs).
Additional information can be found at www.cellmedica.co.uk.
About Touchstone Innovations - www.touchstoneinnovations.com
Touchstone Innovations plc (formerly Imperial Innovations Group plc or
just "Innovations") creates, builds and invests in pioneering technology
companies and licensing opportunities developed from outstanding
scientific research from the 'Golden Triangle', the geographical region
broadly bounded by London, Cambridge and Oxford, which is a world-class
science cluster and home to four of the world's leading universities.
Innovations supports scientists and entrepreneurs in the
commercialisation of their ideas through protecting and licensing out
intellectual property (through its Technology Transfer subsidiary,
Imperial Innovations), by leading the formation of new companies, by
recruiting high calibre management teams and by providing investment and
encouraging co-investment. Since becoming a public company in 2006,
Innovations has invested �306.7 million across its portfolio companies,
which have collectively raised investment of �1.5 billion.
About Invesco Perpetual
Invesco Perpetual is part of Invesco Ltd, an independent investment
management firm - NYSE: IVZ; www.invesco.com.
It is the business name of Invesco Fund Managers Limited, a company
registered in England and Wales with number 898166 and authorised and
regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
About Woodford Investment Management
Woodford is a fast-growing asset management company built on a founding
philosophy of transparency and simplicity. Launched in May 2014, the
company has �16bn assets under management. Further information can be
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