A Treg cell therapeutics BioTech has grown its Series A financing to more than £60 million.
Quell Therapeutics aims to progress its liver transplantation programme to clinical proof of concept whilst expanding its portfolio into autoimmune and neuroinflammatory diseases.
The funding will also allow the London-based company to further develop scalable manufacturing processes and expand its senior leadership team.
The round was led by existing investors Syncona, which has committed an additional $34.7m and UCL Technology Fund, which has committed an additional $1m.
The company’s lead programme, QEL-001, targets tolerance induction post liver transplantation and is expected to enter the clinic in the first half of 2022.
The goal of the QEL-001 therapy is to enable patients to live with their transplanted liver without taking immunosuppressive medication, finally making transplantation the full cure it was always intended to be.
“We have made tremendous progress with our lead program in liver transplantation over the past 12 months,” said CEO Iain McGill. “We have selected our first clinical candidate, QEL-001, and are progressing well through process development.
“In parallel we have leveraged our cell Modular Engineered Treg platform to build out a valuable pipeline in autoimmune and neuroinflammatory diseases.
“We are leading the scientific field in bringing these potentially transformative therapies to patients, with our lead program expected to be the first multiply engineered Treg therapy to enter the clinic.”
Martin Murphy, CEO of Syncona Investment Management Limited, added: “Quell has made strong progress since its foundation in 2019 moving from concept to clinical candidate nomination in less than 18 months.
“The business was founded around the work of world-leading academics and has progressed an exciting first-in-class programme targeting tolerance induction post liver transplantation leveraging the expertise in the company.”