Funding from Deepbridge Capital will support development of next generation biologics
January 10th 2020: Aberdeen, Scotland: Elasmogen Ltd, the biopharmaceutical company leading the development of soloMERTM biologics, today announced it has secured follow-on equity investment from Deepbridge Capital totalling £2 M, taking Deepbridge’s total investment in Elasmogen to £3.15 M. The funding will be used to accelerate the development of the company’s next generation biologics for site-specific delivery and treatment of diseases refractory to existing drug therapies.
soloMERs are Elasmogen’s proprietary, humanized versions of drugs originally based on a protein found in nature called a VNAR. VNARs are small (11 kDa), antibody-like proteins and are key components of a shark’s immune system.
Using the latest genetic engineering techniques, and taking advantage of 400 million years of evolution, Elasmogen has created drug libraries of more than 100 billion unique soloMERs, from which new drug leads can be isolated. The soloMERs’ small size, highly stable nature and simple structure makes them ideal for delivering more effective treatments for diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis and cancer.
Elasmogen is currently progressing its own internal pipeline of novel drugs as well as enjoying a growing number of successful commercial partnerships, where soloMERs are being used to target potent drug warheads (so called drug conjugates) for the treatment of aggressive and life-shortening diseases.
Elasmogen CEO Caroline Barelle said;
“We are delighted that Deepbridge has continued to support our future development. Our pre-clinical data sets are becoming more and more compelling. This data is turning our original hypotheses about the unique selling points of our soloMERs into scientific reality. In fact, we now have results that show our drugs, at least in the laboratory, are 10x more potent than existing therapies.
“In addition, carefully selected partnerships are accelerating the disease modifying potential of our soloMERs, delivering the potential to destroy hard to treat cancers by stealth and from deep inside the solid-tumour.”
Dr Savvas Neophytou, Partner, Head of Life Sciences at Deepbridge Capital, commented;
“Having supported Elasmogen from seed-stage, we are delighted to continue working in partnership with the exceptional team at Elasmogen. Elasmogen typifies the type of growth-focused early-stage innovation that the Enterprise Investment Scheme was designed to support.”
Company Contact: Caroline Barelle, CEO, Elasmogen. Tel. 01224 438578; [email protected]
Spun-out from the University of Aberdeen in 2016, Elasmogen is developing soloMERs; fully humanized, next generation, single chain therapeutics for auto-inflammatory diseases, ophthalmology, oncology and intracellular delivery. soloMERs are proprietary humanized clinical candidates derived from VNARS (variable new-antigen receptors) which exist naturally in sharks as high affinity binding domains. With a different ancestral origin from antibodies this example of 400-million-year-old convergent evolution places VNARs outside of the complex patent landscape that describes and protects antibody drug discovery and has produced the smallest (9% of the size of an antibody) and most robust naturally occurring binding domain. Elasmogen is unique in its capacity to isolate and develop soloMERs, with a multi-layered IP position covering the platform, formats, products and process including over 25 patents granted in the US, Europe and other territories.
The company is using its expertise in early and later-stage pre-clinical development to rapidly advance a series of new, locally delivered protein products against auto-inflammatory diseases. In addition, Elasmogen is collaborating with a number of high-quality biopharma partners and academics to maximise the full therapeutic opportunities that its technology provides. These collaborations are focussed on the delivery of soloMERs directly into cells using either receptor mediated or facilitated passive entry delivering novel approaches for difficult to treat solid tumour cancers.
About Deepbridge Capital:
Deepbridge Capital LLP is a UK based venture capital investment manager, specialising in the funding or early-stage disruptive technology and life sciences innovations. Deepbridge utilises the UK Government’s Enterprise Investment Scheme and Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme to allow private investors the opportunity to claim potential tax reliefs against their investments. Deepbridge believes in supporting, mentoring and investing alongside energetic, high performance management teams. Deepbridge’s ambition is to help their businesses achieve their full potential and thereby provide the best possible outcomes for investors.