Elasmogen Ltd – shark proteins for drug discovery

BBSRC support for research and commercialisation contributed to the creation of award-winning spin-out company Elasmogen by Dr Caroline Barelle and Professor Andrew Porter at the University of Aberdeen. The company is developing new medicines based on the discovery of certain antibody-like molecules found in sharks.

IMPACT SUMMARY

University of Aberdeen researchers Dr Caroline Barelle and Professor Andrew Porter established award-winning spin-out company Elasmogen to develop new medicines based on antibody-like molecules isolated from sharks, called VNARs.

BBSRC investment contributed to the initial research that led to the discovery and patenting of the shark VNARs. Further investment from BBSRC supported commercialisation of the technology, including a £435K follow-on award and a BBSRC/Royal Society of Edinburgh Enterprise Fellowship.

Elasmogen is currently collaborating with Almac Discovery Ltd to develop anti-cancer drugs targeting solid tumours and with Merck Group in the area of bioprocessing.

Since it was founded in early 2016 the company has received £1.1 M private investment. It employs six people and has won several awards for new start-up companies.

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