ADC Biotechology, a cancer research firm that is developing technology to target anti-cancer drugs more intelligently within the body, has seen £6.24m in equity investment pledged by InvestingZone.
Antibody drug conjugates, or ADCs, are proteins made up of an anti-cancer drug and an antibody. Antibodies are proteins capable of locating and eliminating threats to the immune system (such as bacteria or viruses). Attaching them to anti-cancer drugs in ADCs mean that the anti-cancer drugs become capable of targeting only the diseased (cancerous) cells within the animal’s body, instead of exposing healthy cells to their powerful and dangerous effects. In effect, this means healthy cells are preserved and side-effects are dramatically reduced.
ADC Bio’s “lock-release” technology, which ensures the ADCs stay intact until they reach their target cells where the drug component is released, seeks to establish the optimal ratio between the drug and antibody quantities. It also aims to limit aggregation, which is what happens when antibody molecules are denatured (degraded) either inside or outside the body and stick to each other, building up in one location and prompting the immune system to respond. Addressing these challenges together could lead to cheaper and simpler products for cancer patients.
This round of investment is by far ADC Bio’s largest, topping a £1.19m investment at the end of December 2016. That investment valued the company at £5.51m pre-money , up from just £893k pre-money in its preceding 2013 round. ADC Bio has also received £503k in grants, predominantly from Finance Wales, but with a contribution of £10k towards R&D from Denbighshire Enterprise.