Syncona and Cancer Research Technology have announced the launch of a new private company - Achilles Therapeutics - that will bring together research from University College London and the Francis Crick Institute, funded by Cancer Research UK and the National Institute for Health Research.
Achilles will design therapies to target truncal tumour neo-antigens - unique flags to the immune system present on the surface of every cancer cell but not heathy ones - which were first discovered by Cancer Research UK and the NIHR University College London Hospitals (UCLH) Biomedical Research Centre.
Syncona and CRT, with the support of UCL Business (UCLB) and the Crick, formed Achilles with a successful financing round of £13.2 million to help advance its work in the area.
"Our research could provide a truly personalised approach to lung cancer therapy by targeting cell surface markers that are specific to each patient and present on all cancer cells rather than just a subset of cells," said Professor Charles Swanton, scientific founder of Achilles Therapeutics and a Group Leader at the Francis Crick Institute. "We're delighted to be able to bring this exciting science closer to the clinic".