UCL Enterprise Annual Review 2013/2014

Welcome to the third full year of the delivery phase of UCL’s enterprise strategy. As anticipated, our community continues to strive for excellence and that approach and commitment is clearly working. From working with corporations to assisting student entrepreneurs and spinning out research, We hope that you will enjoy reading about all our enterprise activities from across the university in this Annual Review for 2013/2014.

Professor Stephen Caddick
Vice-Provost (Enterprise and London)

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UCL spin-out Spirogen sold to AstraZeneca for $200 million

22 October 2013

Spirogen, a biotechnology company spun-out of UCL by UCL Business in 2001, has been sold to AstraZeneca.

The company – which develops novel therapeutics to target cancers – was sold to AstraZeneca’s MedImmune unit for an initial $200 million, with a payment of a further $200 million should Spirogen meet development targets. The funds will be used to bolster the company’s oncology pipeline.

In particular, Spirogen focuses on antibody-drug conjugate technology; technology which has the potential to directly target cancer tumours while leaving healthy cells intact.

"The cutting-edge technologies developed by Spirogen and ADC Therapeutics complement MedImmune's innovative antibody engineering capabilities, enabling us to accelerate antibody-drug conjugates into the clinic," said MedImmune Executive Vice President Bahija Jallal.

Spirogen CEO Dr Chris Martin said: “This deal reflects the very significant progress made by our scientists, most notably over the last two years, as we have applied our warhead and linker technologies to the development of highly potent and specific ADCs.

“We believe that PBD-armed antibody-drug conjugates will emerge as a critical component in the next generation of cancer biologics with the potential to make a difference for oncologists and their patients. We look forward to combining our world class capabilities in this area with MedImmune’s ability to develop this exciting class of oncology drugs.”