Mogrify subsidiary Chondrogenix secures funding from SBRI Healthcare to advance regenerative cartilage therapy to the clinic
Chondrogenix will use Mogrify’s data-driven conversion platform to generate a safe, efficient and scalable source of cartilage cells for the treatment of osteoarthritis
Cambridge, UK, 1st April 2019: Chondrogenix, a wholly owned subsidiary of Mogrify Ltd (Mogrify®), a UK company aiming to transform the future development of cell therapies, today announced that it has secured funding from SBRI Healthcare, the NHS England funded initiative championed by the AHSN Network, to develop a safe, efficient and scalable source of therapeutic cells for the treatment of osteoarthritis.
The Mogrify Platform (Rackham et al., Nature Genetics, 2016) has been used by Chondrogenix to successfully convert multiple starting cell types to functional chondrocytes capable in vitro of spontaneously forming cartilage, and this funding will support the partnering of this asset to take it through the remaining pre-clinical stages before entering clinical trials.
Osteoarthritis is a progressive disease of synovial joints resulting in the breakdown of articular cartilage and bone and is the most common joint disorder, affecting more than 30 million adults in the United States* alone. Current treatments only focus on addressing the symptoms, for instance, pain or inflammation, and in some cases result in total joint replacement.
Following on from a proof-of-concept study, Chondrogenix is using a cocktail of small molecules (identified by the Mogrify Platform) to transdifferentiate several different starting cell types, directly sourced from diseased patients, into functional hyaline chondrocytes to ultimately be used in the clinic to enhance the already approved Autologous Chondrocyte Implantation (ACI) therapy and create additional allogeneic and in vivo reprograming therapies. Chondrogenix will apply for the Phase 2 funding from SBRI Healthcare for £1 million GBP, which will support the progression of the Company’s lead asset into the clinic.
Dr Wael Kafienah, PhD, Director, Chondrogenix and Senior Lecturer, University of Bristol, said: “After several years of research in collaboration with Mogrify, it is great to see our transdifferentiated cartilage cells gain commercial traction from grants such as the SBRI Healthcare and (pre-)clinical partners.”
Mogrify has developed a proprietary direct cellular conversion technology, which makes it possible to transform (transmogrify) any mature human cell type into any other without going through a pluripotent stem cell- or progenitor cell-state.
The platform takes a systematic big-data approach to identify, from next-generation sequencing and
gene-regulatory networks, the transcription factors (in vitro) or small molecules (in vivo), needed to convert a cell. By bypassing the stem cell-stage of cell transformation, Mogrify simultaneously addresses challenges associated with efficacy, safety and scalability.
Mogrify is applying its patented technology to generate IP and cell types that will power the development and manufacture of new cell therapies across every therapeutic area.
Uniquely positioned to address a cell therapy market estimated to be $35 billion USD by 2023, Mogrify is commercializing its technology via IP licensing, product development, and drug development. Based in Cambridge, UK, the Company has raised $3.7 million USD seed funding from Ahren Innovation Capital, 24Haymarket and Dr Darrin M Disley, OBE.
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About Chondrogenixwww.chondrogenix.com Chondrogenix is a private biotechnology company based in the UK. Our founders are experts in cell engineering, bioinformatics and computational genomics and founded the company with the mission of revolutionizing the way that cell reprograming is utilized in osteoarthritis. The company’s unique combination of skills has allowed us to find ways to precisely control the cellular fate of chondrocytes. We are using this knowledge to pioneer a novel first-in-class cartilage regenerative medicine. This new data-driven approach to the field of regenerative medicine allows us to find optimal treatment strategies without the need for costly trial and error optimization.
About SBRI Healthcare www.sbrihealthcare.co.uk SBRI Healthcare is an NHS England initiative, led by the Academic Health Science Network (AHSN), who aim to promote UK economic growth whilst addressing unmet health needs and enhancing the take up of known best practice.