Cambridge-based biotechnology company PolyProx Therapeutics has raised £3.4 million in seed capital to finance development of its cancer drug technology.
The Department of Pharmacology, University of Cambridge spin-out will develop a new class of drugs, called Polyproxin molecules, that can selectively target and trigger natural degradation machinery within tumour cells.
Christine Martin, Investment Manager at Cambridge Enterprise, said: “This is a great technology that is poised to address the elusive ‘difficult to drug’ section of the proteome to ultimately bring patient benefit.”
Polyproxin molecules target disease-causing proteins within tumour cells and trigger pathways to eliminate these proteins, thereby halting further growth of the tumour. This has the potential to address cancer targets that have proven untreatable using current technologies.
Professor Laura Itzhaki, Founder of PolyProx Therapeutics, said: “Our platform, which harnesses the cell’s natural protein degradation pathways, should allow access to many hard-to-drug targets and enable screening of molecules against these targets more quickly than existing approaches.”
PolyProx Therapeutics, based at the Babraham Research Campus, is focused on the discovery and development of novel biopharmaceuticals for cancer treatment.
Its funding round, which was co-led by Cambridge Innovation Capital and Cambridge Enterprise, will help grow the PolyProx team and develop its technology over two years.