ADC Biotechnology secures funding for new antibody initiative

ADC Biotechnology has secured a package of investment and grants totalling £450,000 to expand development and commercialisation of its new antibody drug production technology.

ADC Biotechnology has secured a package of investment and grants totalling £450,000 to expand development and commercialisation of its new antibody drug production technology.

The package includes £350,000 of equity funding from Finance Wales together with a consortium of private investors led by Acceleris Ltd. A £93,000 R&D grant from the Welsh Government and a £10,000 capital grant from Denbighshire County Council complete the package.

The North Wales-based company’s technology focuses on new methods to manufacture the latest generation of cancer drugs called antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) which target tumour cells directly without the side effects common in conventional chemotherapy.

Charlie Johnson, CEO designate of ADC Bio comments, ‘The technology has truly exciting potential and will help international pharmaceutical companies to make new antibody-based drugs more efficiently and at lower cost. These new drugs represent a significant breakthrough for patients and offer much hope for the future fight against cancer.

‘Increasing the availability of affordable cancer drugs is one of the key challenges we face today and with drug production becoming ever more complex, technologies that promote faster, safer and more cost effective development of exciting new therapies are vital.’

The company estimates that its technology can achieve very significant cost reductions over conventional drug manufacturing processes.

Dr Melanie Goward, senior investment executive at Finance Wales adds, ‘The demand for cancer drugs continues to grow and the antibody manufacturing market is set to take off. ADC Bio has real potential and Finance Wales’ investment has enabled the company to kick-start the commercialisation of its technology.’

In 2010 the monoclonal antibody market topped $40 billion in global sales. Oncology represents more than 50 per cent of current sales of monoclonal antibodies. ADCs primarily have application in the area of oncology and are widely viewed as their natural successors, possessing greater efficacy and potency against a wide variety of tumours.