Biotechnology company Alchemab Therapeutics and Medicines Discovery Catapult (MDC) have received $2.06m (£1.7m) grant from Innovate UK to accelerate the development of disease modifying therapy to treat Huntington’s disease.
Innovate UK awarded the grant as part of its Biomedical Catalyst 2022 research and development (R&D) competition.
Alchemab is currently undertaking the preclinical studies to progress its antibodies panel to first in human studies.
The company seeks to find new drug targets by understanding the unique features of the antibody response of resilient individuals.
This process enables Alchemab to develop therapies based on naturally derived antibodies to target hard-to-treat diseases that currently have limited treatment options.
Through its platform, the company has discovered the panel of antibodies and expects that this will lead to a disease modifying therapy for Huntington’s Disease, a devastating neurodegenerative disorder.
Alchemab CEO Young Kwon said: “Our aim is to develop antibodies as therapies to transform the treatment of Huntington’s Disease by slowing or stopping the course of neurodegeneration.
“This latest funding from Innovate UK will enable us to accelerate development of our antibody and deliver some hope for patients.”
The funding, which represents the second grant awarded to Alchemab and MDC, will help support the preclinical development of the lead antibody to show the efficacy, safety, and manufacturability profile for first in human clinical trials and preparation for final stages of development.
Alchemab co-founder and chief scientific officer Jane Osbourn said: “Alchemab’s platform flips drug discovery on its head: we start with patient response and let it guide us to the most important targets and therapeutics.
“I’m excited that our novel approach has led us to this potential first-in-class antibody and target.
“We hope that this important program is one of many, opening up a new front in our ability to combat hard-to-treat diseases such as neurodegeneration and cancers.”