Syncona recently announced the foundation of Quell Therapeutics – a new cell therapy company. The new company received a £35 million commitment, primarily from Syncona (with £1 million contributed by UCL Technology Fund) in a Series A financing.
The aim of establishing Quell was to develop engineered T regulatory cell therapies. Tregs are a subset of T cells, providing a regulatory function, with strong immune-suppressive capacity.
Quell hopes to improve therapies for the management and treatment of a range of conditions by utilising these Treg cells. Such treatments might include solutions for solid organ transplant rejection, autoimmune and inflammatory diseases.
Quell will use this funding to initiate the development of its first programme. Working closely with the Syncona team, Quell will build its operations and management team. Appointed to be chairman of Quell is Syncona Chief Executive, Martin Murphy, with Elisa Petris and Freddie Dear, Syncona Partners, as Director and Observer on the Board, respectively.
Elisa Petris, Partner of Syncona Investment Management Limited, said: “The foundation of Quell represents an exciting opportunity for Syncona to build the leading cell engineering company with the potential to develop a first-in-class therapy in an innovative field.
Over the last year, we have worked to bring together a group of world-class leaders in their respective fields, developed a strategy for the business and funded the business to enable it to scale and succeed.”
Martin Murphy, Chief Executive of Syncona Investment Management Limited, said: “Quell is the tenth life science company to be founded by Syncona and clearly demonstrates our proactive model in areas of deep domain expertise.
“We identified an innovative area of science with the potential to deliver dramatic impact for patients and worked to build a company around it. It is an exciting addition to our cell therapy platform, where we are strategically and uniquely positioned with expertise across a range of modalities.”