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Oxford-based Mirobio raises £80 million to help treat autoimmune diseases

15:36 06 July in Life Sciences & Healthcare, News, Oxfordshire, Talent and Innovation

MiroBio, the Oxford University spin-out which is learning the language of immune cells to control their activity, is developing checkpoint agonists (agonists activate pathways that promote adaptive immune responses) to treat autoimmune diseases. It has has now completed a $97 million (£80 million) Series B financing led by London-based Medicxi with participation from new investors, OrbiMed and Monograph Capital and existing Series A investors, Oxford Science EnterprisesSamsara BioCapitalSR One and Advent Life Sciences.

Immune imbalance is at the heart of many conditions that are marked by an attack on the body’s own cells. MiroBio is advancing a new class of therapies designed to restore immune balance and potentially provide durable remission from these complex and often chronic immune-mediated conditions.

The immune system consists of highly specialised cells that have evolved to detect, identify and destroy cells and organisms that would otherwise do us harm. These immune cells are controlled by a fine balance of stimulatory and inhibitory signals delivered by receptors on the cells’ surfaces.

MiroBio is entering clinical stage development with a new class of checkpoint agonist antibodies to restore immune balance. It has developed I-ReSToRE, a proprietary discovery platform including the Checkpoint Atlas™ to generate multiple checkpoint agonist candidates for the treatment of autoimmune diseases.

The platform combines cutting-edge receptor mapping with epitope (the part of the antigen that binds to a specific antigen receptor on the surface of a B cell) and antibody engineering. It is the product of more than 15 years’ foundational research from Oxford University into identifying and triggering checkpoint receptors to deliver safe, efficacious medicines to restore immune homeostasis.

Funds will primarily be used to advance MiroBio’s two lead antibody candidates into clinical trials and obtain safety and efficacy data in patients with autoimmune diseases. MB272 and MB151 are differentiated, precision-engineered checkpoint receptor agonists for BTLA (B- and T-Lymphocyte Attenuator) & PD-1 (Programmed cell Death protein 1) respectively, offering transformative therapeutic potential for patients. Proceeds will also be used to advance MiroBio’s pre-clinical pipeline and further develop the Company’s proprietary I-ReSToRE discovery platform. Following the fundraising Nick Williams of Medicxi and Erez Chimovits of OrbiMed will join MiroBio’s Board of Directors.

“We are pleased to have such strong support from our new and existing investors. The addition of Medicxi, Orbimed and Monograph to our syndicate further consolidates our transatlantic investor base and board.  As our lead asset, MB272 enters the clinic, this investor base provides us with the resources to demonstrate the unique potential of our checkpoint agonists as a new and exciting class of therapies for autoimmune patients. Beyond MB272, Miro is leveraging its I-ReSToRE platform to advance our pipeline programs towards the clinic and help realize our vision of restoring immune homeostasis in patients with autoimmune diseases”

Eliot Charles, Chairman of MiroBio

 

MiroBio created the I-ReSToRE platform (REceptor Selection and Targeting to Reinstate immune Equilibrium) to develop best- and first-in-class medicines to treat autoimmune diseases. This unique platform combines the proprietary Checkpoint Atlas™ of receptor expression and function, sophisticated antibody discovery processes and advanced bioinformatics enabling a precision medicine approach to autoimmune disease.  I-ReSToRE supports identification and therapeutic application of checkpoint receptor agonists to restore immune homeostasis for patients.

“We are excited to be working with MiroBio to bring a new class of agents to patients. Despite recent advances, significant clinical unmet need remains in autoimmune disease. By restoring immune homeostasis, checkpoint agonists have the potential to provide novel and differentiated treatments to these patients. We’ve been deeply impressed by Miro’s best-in-class discovery engine and look forward to supporting the company as it transitions into the clinic.”

Nick Williams, Partner at Medicxi

 

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