Inivata Raises £4m to Realise the Potential of ctDNA Analysis to Improve Cancer Treatment through Simple Blood Tests
New spin-out from Cancer Research UK launched with funding from Imperial Innovations, Cambridge Innovation Capital and Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation.
Cambridge, UK, 23 September 2014. Inivata, a clinical cancer genomics company focused on harnessing the potential of circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA) analysis to improve cancer testing and treatment, today announced it has raised £4m in a funding round led by Imperial Innovations and including Cambridge Innovation Capital and Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation.
Inivata is focused on developing clinical applications of ctDNA through collaborations with clinical oncologists at prominent academic institutions, leading community treatment centres and innovative biopharmaceutical companies.
Novel applications of ctDNA are enabled by Inivata’s technology platform which includes its proprietary, enhanced TAm-SeqTM technology. TAm-Seq, which is licensed to Inivata from Cancer Research Technology and the University of Cambridge, allows the detection and analysis of genomic material from a cancer patient’s cell-free ctDNA collected through routinely accessible blood samples. This non-invasive approach – a liquid biopsy – offers a revolution in how cancer is detected, monitored and treated. Inivata’s founders are recognised leaders in the clinical genomics and ctDNA fields having developed pioneering ctDNA and novel treatment approaches in Cancer Research UK-funded laboratories at the University of Cambridge.
Inivata works with industry and academics to develop new clinical applications for ctDNA analysis which will bring real benefits to physicians, patients, pharmaceutical companies and payers. Inivata’s goal is to provide physicians with the information they need to provide the best outcomes for patients and effective design for clinical trials.
Michael Stocum, CEO of Inivata, said: “There is major focus on ctDNA analysis which promises the ability to improve monitoring and treatment of cancer based on information from routine blood samples. We are taking a collaborative approach to the development of clinical applications for ctDNA analysis which have the potential to transform how the disease is understood and treated.
“Nitzan Rosenfeld and his team are leaders in the field. I am excited to be working with our scientific founders, and with this significant fund raising secured we are now focused on working with pharmaceutical, clinical and academic partners to identify applications and rapidly realise the potential of the enhanced TAm-Seq approach.”
Rob Woodman of Imperial Innovations said: “The oncology molecular testing and treatment market is large and growing. Inivata is well-placed to capitalise on this market growth by bringing real benefits to physicians, patients, pharmaceutical companies and payers.”
Robert Tansley of Cambridge Innovation Capital said: “The research by Dr Rosenfeld’s team is ground breaking and offers new options in cancer monitoring to better manage treatment response prediction. This investment will secure the development of this technology in Cambridge and facilitate its translation into the clinic for the benefit of patients.”
Keith Blundy, Chief Executive Officer of Cancer Research Technology and Inivata board member, said: “We’re delighted to be involved in taking this promising technology developed by Cancer Research UK scientists to the next level. Developing technologies that allow clinicians to monitor how tumours respond to treatment non-invasively and in real-time forms a crucial part of Cancer Research UK’s commitment to deliver the promise of precision cancer medicine to patients.”
Inivata is a leader in liquid biopsy. Its InVision® platform unlocks essential genomic information from a simple blood draw to transform the care of cancer patients. The Company’s technology is based on pioneering research from the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute, University of Cambridge and reinforced by multiple high caliber publications. Its lead product, InVisionFirst®-Lung, is commercially available and provides molecular insights that enable clinicians to make more informed treatment decisions for advanced NSCLC patients. Inivata is partnering with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies on InVisionFirst-Lung and its wider platform, which is applicable to a range of cancer types. The Company has a CLIA certified, CAP accredited laboratory in Research Triangle Park, NC and laboratories in Cambridge, UK. For more information, please go to www.inivata.com. Follow us on Twitter @Inivata.
About Imperial Innovations
Innovations creates, builds and invests in pioneering technologies addressing global problems in healthcare, energy, engineering and the environment. It combines deep understanding of science and technology with commercial acumen and strong investment expertise. In December 2010 Innovations raised £140m to accelerate the making of, and increase the size of, investments in companies established under its existing intellectual property pipeline agreement with Imperial College London. The Group also intends to invest in companies founded by or based on technology from the University of Oxford, the University of Cambridge and University College London.
About Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation
Johnson & Johnson Development Corporation (JJDC) is the venture capital subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson that has been investing since 1973 in the medical device, diagnostic, pharmaceutical, and consumer health areas. JJDC’s goal is to create opportunities that meet the strategic needs of its operating affiliates while providing visibility to innovative emerging technology, businesses and business models JJDC invests in companies across the continuum from early stage seed investments to the advanced stages of series venture management.
About Cambridge Innovation Capital
Cambridge Innovation Capital (“CIC”) was launched with initial funding from long-term institutional and strategic investors including Invesco Perpetual, Lansdowne Partners and the University of Cambridge Endowment Fund. We invest in high-growth life science and technology companies arising from the University of Cambridge and the wider Cambridge Cluster. With our close ties to the University, active angel groups and the entrepreneurial community, our mission is to be one of the leading venture capital investors in the vibrant Cambridge Cluster. Where needed, our investment strategy backed by our permanent capital structure, allows us to provide long-term financial support to our portfolio companies.
About Cancer Research Technology
Cancer Research Technology Limited (CRT) is a specialist commercialisation and development company, which aims to develop new discoveries in cancer research for the benefit of cancer patients. CRT works closely with leading international cancer scientists and their institutes to protect intellectual property arising from their research and to establish links with commercial partners. CRT facilitates the discovery, development and marketing of new cancer therapeutics, vaccines, diagnostics and enabling technologies. CRT is wholly owned by Cancer Research UK, the world’s leading cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research.