Cambridge biotech company Arecor has been awarded £785,000 from the government-backed Biomedical Catalyst Fund to accelerate the development of high concentration antibodies to allow more convenient administration of our future therapeutic medicines and reduce healthcare costs. Arecor has recently demonstrated Proof of Concept in developing stable aqueous formulations of a number of high concentration monoclonal antibodies.
The award was announced by Technology Strategy Board yesterday and is one of 32 projects awarded funding totalling £39 million. These are the first substantial awards made from the £180 million Biomedical Catalyst programme managed by the Technology Strategy Board and the Medical Research Council.
Arecor is a pioneer in the stabilisation of biologic molecules, a key challenge in the development of many therapeutic proteins, vaccines and diagnostics. Many proteins, peptides or vaccines are too unstable in liquid form to develop ready-to-use drugs or are unstable at high concentrations. Arecor has developed a set of unique technologies to address these problems with the potential to revolutionise the development, use and distribution of the next generation of therapeutic medicines.
Tom Saylor, CEO of Arecor, said the award will go towards a £1.3 million project to drive forward their innovative research:
“Arecor is delighted to have been awarded an inaugural Biomedical Catalysts funding from the Technology Strategy Board which justifies our position as a leader in the field of stable aqueous formulation and confidence in our platform for stabilising anitbody therapies at high concentration, as well as recognising the expertise of our dedicated scientists.”
David Willetts, Minister for Universities and Science, said:
“Britain is in a global race today and this £39 million investment will help keep us at the very forefront of life sciences by supporting some of our most innovative SMEs and universities. It will help take excellent ideas through to market, driving growth and helping patients benefit from the very latest technologies and treatments.”
The ground breaking work carried out using Arecor’s patented formulation technology can enable new and better medicines and vaccines. From its work on over 60 biological molecules, Arecor has developed proprietary technologies to address most of the pathways that lead these products to degrade in storage.
Arecor’s unique technology also enables the development of high concentration forms of antibodies to simplify and reduce the costs of current treatments, which currently require visits to hospitals for administration. This will enable a shift from unsatisfactory outpatient intravenous infusions presently used in clinics to the provision of a ready-to-use autoinjector or simple injection. The benefits of self-administration include increased treatment satisfaction, convenience and improved healthcare costs.
Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board, added:
“We have been hugely impressed by the number and quality of applications, which just goes to show the strength, vitality and innovative spirit of the UK’s world-leading life sciences industry. By providing vital finance to help at least some of these companies to evaluate, develop and demonstrate their exciting healthcare innovations, the Biomedical Catalyst is helping to turn promising ideas into innovative technologies faster, so providing greater benefits to patients through improvements in health outcomes.”
Notes to Editors:
1. Further information about Arecor can be found out: http://www.arecor.com/
2. For media enquiries, please contact Arecor press officer Ellee Seymour on 01353 648565 or 07939 811961.
3.For Business Development enquiries, please contact Guy Hill on Reveal email address or 07867 781315.