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A University of Cambridge spinout T-Therapeutics has raised £48m ($59.7m) in Series A financing to develop T cell receptor (TCR) therapies.

The Series A financiers include the University of Cambridge Venture Fund, Sanofi Ventures, Sofinnova Partners, F-Prime Capital, Digitalis Ventures, and Cambridge Innovation Capital (CIC).

Cell therapies are a growing area of interest in the immuno-oncology (IO) field, with multiple companies investing in developing TCR therapies. To address this growing interest, Twist Biosciences launched Twist TCR libraries to aid in developing these therapies in April.

Aong with the financing, Sofinnova Partners’ Graziano Seghezzi, F-Prime’s Nihal Sinha, Digitalis’ Samuel Bjork and CIC’s Robert Tansley will join the board of directors at T-Therapeutics, as per a 15 November press release.

The UK-based company plans to develop TCR therapies to treat cancers and auto-immune diseases. T-Therapeutics has developed a proprietary transgenic mouse platform, OpTiMus, based on a fully humanised mouse to develop these antigen specific human TCR therapies.

“We intend to replicate the success of therapeutic antibodies but build on this in a new dimension, by using the targeting domains of TCR receptors to take advantage of their much greater specificity for cancer cells compared to normal cells,” said T-Therapeutics’ CEO Professor Allan Bradley in the 15 November press release.

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“The same logic can be used to target immunosuppressive biologics to tissues impacted by autoimmune disorders. By engineering a mouse that makes human TCRs, we are able to discover anti-cancer TCRs that are quantitatively and qualitatively better than those that can currently be isolated from humans or using display technologies.”

Cell & Gene Therapy coverage on Pharmaceutical Technology is supported by Cytiva

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