A new UCL spin-out company – Autolus – is being launched today to develop and commercialise a new generation of engineered T-cell therapies for haematological and solid tumours, with the backing of £30m in investment from healthcare investment company Syncona.
UCLB funded research wins prize in Roche Pharma Research & Early Development Oncology Awards
27 November 2013
Vineeta Tripathi from the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology has won third prize in the first Roche Pharma Research & Early Development (pRED) Oncology Awards in the field of ‘Novel Highly tumour-selective Membrane Targets for Antibody-based Cancer Therapy’, for work originally co-funded by UCLB.
Dr Tripathi won the prize for her studies on the development and validation of function-inhibiting antibodies targeting Lrg 1 (leucine-rich alpha-2-glycoprotein-1) for the suppression of blood vessel formation in tumours.
The work of Dr Tripathi – part of a wider body of work focusing on Lrg1 led by Professor John Greenwood and Professor Stephen Moss, both also part of the Institute of Ophthalmology – was chosen out of the ten best study submissions at Roche’s Penzberg base in Germany in front of a panel of academic colleagues and Roche experts.
Following funding by the Lowy Foundation and the MRC for the original research, UCLB funded the initial stages of the project through several Proof of Concept awards and has worked with the team to ensure two patents now cover the emerging technology. Staff at UCLB also worked with Professors Greenwood and Moss to secure translational funding from an MRC DPFS award.
“This prize is well-deserved and is welcome recognition for the work our team is doing in this area of potential tumour suppression,” said Professor John Greenwood, Hugh Davson Professor of Biomedical Research at UCL. “The molecule we are examining, Lrg 1, has strong potential for the treatment of cancers and research is ongoing to bring this closer to an eventual commercial product.”
The pRED Oncology science award for outstanding European research work in the field of antibody-based cancer therapy was presented for the first time this year by Roche’s Discovery Oncology Unit in Penzberg. It honours innovative cancer research and emphasizes the commitment to more intensive collaboration with higher education institutions.
“We are delighted by the outstanding quality and great number of submissions on this vital cancer research topic,” commented Klaus Bosslet, Head of Discovery Oncology at Roche, and initiator of the award. “For the first award of a prize, this is an extraordinary result.”
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