UCL Faculty of Medical Sciences


The UCL spinout revolutionising cancer treatment

Autolus Therapeutics’ technology offers hope beyond standard oncology care, with the potential for a cure in some patients.

Autolus Therapeutics

2 November 2020

Autolus is a clinical-stage, biopharmaceutical company. It was spun out by UCL Business, part of UCL Innovation & Enterprise, in 2014. Autolus evolved from the work of Dr Martin Pule’s laboratory at the UCL Cancer Institute (part of the faculty of Medical Sciences) and NIHR University College London Hospitals Biomedical Research Centre. 

At UCL School of Life & Medical Sciences (SLMS), we have the largest community of clinicians and researchers in cell and gene therapy research in Europe. Autolus is a leader in T cell programming technologies. T cells are an essential part of our immune system which kill infected cells. Autolus takes T cells from patients, reprograms them to target and eliminate cancer cells and infuses them back into the body. 

Clinical trials have shown positive outcomes for patients with leukaemias and lymphomas that have failed to respond to traditional treatments. In some cases, the therapy may indicate a cure. Solid tumours may also benefit from T cell therapy.

Autolus achieved £30 million in investment from venture capital firm Syncona Partners. Further funding rounds raised £40 million and £59 million. In 2018, Autolus was listed on the Nasdaq Stock Market, raising $150 million (£108 million).

Further reading
The UCL spinout company heralding a revolution in cancer treatment