Cancer research

Macomics raises further funds to boost growth


Scottish bioscience company Macomics, has closed a follow-on financing of £4.24 million from its 2020 seed round, bringing the total amount raised to £7.44m.

The additional investment brings in new investor Caribou Property alongside existing investors Epidarex Capital, who led the round, and Scottish Enterprise. It will be used to accelerate the company’s growth, including expansion of the team.

Macomics is developing precision medicines to modulate macrophages for the treatment of cancer. The company was co-founded in 2019 by Prof Jeffrey Pollard and Dr Luca Cassetta, University of Edinburgh, internationally recognised leaders in macrophage biology.

It is progressing a diversified portfolio of therapies targeting disease specific tumour associated macrophages towards the clinic. The new investment and planned Series A will enable the company to accelerate progress of its antibody programs towards the clinic, expand its portfolio, and further invest in its target discovery technology.

Alongside the financing, the company announces the expansion of its leadership team with the appointment of Dr Myatt as Chief Executive Officer and Dr Ries as Chief Scientific Officer, as well as Dr Cassetta who will join as VP Immunology on 1 August.

Dr Steve Myatt, CEO who joined Macomics in February 2021 said: “Macomics has made great progress since formation, and I am excited to lead Macomics in driving forward its vision to become a leading immuno-oncology company pioneering macrophage-based therapies for the treatment of cancer.

“Our diversified portfolio of antibody programs combined with our proprietary target identification approach and world-class team uniquely positions us to deliver on this vision.”

Dr Carola Ries, who joins as Chief Scientific Officer from 16 years at Roche added: “It is an exciting time to be joining Macomics. In recognising disease specific TAM populations Macomics is taking a new approach to macrophage-based drug discovery, one that I believe has potential to deliver significant benefit to patients.

“By combining analysis of human disease tissue, in silico data mining, and functional data from our state-of-the-art cellular models we are well placed to identify and validate new drug targets in diseases where macrophages play a central role. I look forward to applying my extensive industry experience gained at Roche to driving our programs towards the clinic.”

Commenting on his full-time move into the company, Dr Luca Cassetta, said: “Macomics was founded based on leading academic research around macrophage biology, particularly in cancer, from the laboratory of Professor Jeffrey Pollard, Director of the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh, as well as my own research studying TAMs.”

Dr Elizabeth Roper, Partner at Epidarex Capital and Investor Director at Macomics said: “The company has demonstrated the power of its platform and approach and has already moved two of its programs into antibody discovery and identified a series of additional targets. We are excited about its potential, reflected in our increased commitment to the company.”

She added “On behalf of the board, I am pleased to welcome Steve, Carola and Luca to the team. Their experience in biotech, pharma and academia are highly complementary and broaden and deepen the skills of the leadership team.”

Georges Aboud, Chief Investment Officer at Caribou Property, commented: “We are pleased to join the investment round, having seen the progress Macomics has made in just over 12 months. Our goal is to back exciting and innovative companies that can make an impact on patients’ lives. Macomics has shown that its knowledge of macrophage biology can deliver innovative approaches to treat cancer and it has assembled an experienced team to maximise its potential.”

Jan Robertson, Interim Director of Growth Investments at Scottish Enterprise, added: “This funding round secured by Macomics is testament to the company’s pioneering macrophage-based therapies for the treatment of cancer as well as the talent in Scotland. Scottish Enterprise is pleased to support this leading biotech firm that is now set to accelerate its research and development programmes, and expand its facilities in Edinburgh.”

Macomics has expanded its R&D and office facilities on the Cambridge Science Park and has taken additional laboratory and cell culture space within Edinburgh University, and will be expanding its scientific team to support its accelerated R&D.

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