Investment group Abingworth has provided seed funding to GammaDelta Therapeutics Ltd, a new immunotherapy company founded on research from the Francis Crick Institute and King's College London.
Professor Adrian Hayday and Dr Oliver Nussbaumer's research has focused on gamma delta (γδ) T cells, a unique and conserved population of immune cells that contribute to many types of immune responses and immunopathologies.
The new company will seek to exploit the properties of tissue resident γδ T cells and develop improved immunotherapies for cancer and potentially other diseases.
GammaDelta Therapeutics has also received support from three organisations: Cancer Research Technology (CRT), King's College London and the Francis Crick Institute. The company is being incubated at Abingworth's London office.
Peter Goodfellow, an advisor to Abingworth and formerly Senior Vice President for Discovery Research at GlaxoSmithKline, is chairman of the board. The board also includes Adrian Hayday; Raj Mehta of CRT; Stephen Parker, Institutes Director; Mike Owen, formerly Senior Vice President for Biopharmaceuticals Research at GlaxoSmithKline; and Tim Haines, Managing Partner of Abingworth.
Raj Mehta, Founder and Interim CEO, said: "We are delighted to have attracted the support of Abingworth to the founding and development of GammaDelta Therapeutics and will use the proceeds to help us advance our innovative programmes into the clinic."
Abingworth's Tim Haines said: "GammaDelta's technology is differentiated from other approaches to immunotherapy being pursued and has the potential to make a significant impact on the treatment of cancer. We look forward to working with the team to advance the discovery and development of novel therapeutic candidates based on this exciting approach."