Investors put faith in Newcastle-based company

University spin-out Newcells Biotech Ltd (UK) has secured investment to further iPSC production

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Sep 09, 2015
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iPSCs are derived from the reprogramming of adult cells into a cell capable of indefinite reproduction and transformation into almost any other cell type, thus reducing the need for embryonic stem cells. iPSCs have multiple uses, particularly in the development and testing of new drugs, where they can be used to screen for efficacy and toxicity.

Newcells Biotech Ltd, a spin-out company from Newcastle University (UK), is using pioneering technology to create induced iPSCs. “There are many benefits to using iPSCs in developing drug treatments. Not only can iPSCs be derived easily from any patient, they offer us the opportunity to test treatments on cells with specific genetic make-ups,” explained CSO Lyle Armstrong. “For example, if you are researching treatments for Alzheimer’s patients, you could use iPSCs derived from someone with the condition to test new drugs. The technology also gives the ability to source iPSCs from close relatives to use as controls.”

Newcells Biotech Ltd has now secured six-figure seed investment from regional Venture Capital firm Northstar Centures. This investment will allow the company to begin manufacturing new iPSC lines. Two initial orders have already been received by the start-up, which aims to target pharmaceutical, biotechnology and academic customers.

The investment by regional Venture Capital firm Northstar Ventures will allow Newcells Biotech Ltd to begin manufacturing new iPSC lines. The company has already received two initial orders and targets pharmaceutical, biotechnology and academic customers.

“The investment we have received will let us build on our research to bring our products and services to drug discovery and disease modelling teams in the biotechnology industry and academia,” stated CEO Mike Nicholds. “We are excited about what these developments could do for the discovery of new medicines and committed to building our company using the strong knowledge base found in the North East.”

– Written by Hannah Wilson

Source: Newcastle University News: www.ncl.ac.uk/medicalsciences/news/item/newcastle-university-spin-out-secures-six-figure-investment

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