Imperial’s NK:IO Awarded $2.09M Grant for the Development of NK Cell Therapy
14 July 2023
Finance & Investment
Imperial’s spinout, NK:IO has been granted $2.09 million to support preclinical development, including the development of a manufacturing process with Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult whose mission is to support the cell and gene therapy industry in the UK.
Mike Romanos, Co-Founder and Interim CEO, NK:IO, stated:
“We are very excited by the potential of NK:IO’s platform to address unmet needs in cancer therapy and delighted to receive grant funding from this highly competitive new Innovate UK program.”
The company’s first indication targeted will be ovarian cancer in collaboration with leading oncology expert Professor Iain McNeish, Professor of Oncology at Imperial College, Director of the Ovarian Cancer Action Research Centre.
“The funding will directly support our collaboration with the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult in a program of development work to scale our products and make them clinic-ready for our first clinical application in ovarian cancer,” continued Romanos.
The unique platform will activate blood stem cell progenitors to yield industry-leading NK cell tumor-killing potency and very high-yield cell production, believed to be transformative in cancer cell therapy.
NK:IO was founded in December 2020 by Hugh J M Brady, Professor of Immunology; Matt Fuchter, Professor of Chemistry and Mike Romanos, experienced industry executive and entrepreneur. The Company was based on the revolutionary discoveries in NK cell biology from Brady and Fuchter at Imperial College. The board is chaired by Keith Thompson CBE, who is the former CEO of the UK’s Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult.
NK:IO’s technologies utilize the potential of the innate immune system to develop pioneered NK cell and small molecule therapies that target both hematological and solid tumors. The Company has so far developed three interrelated, proprietary technology platforms: wNK:IO Cells, eNK:IO Cells, dNK:IO REV-ERB Antagonists.