HELSINKI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--TILT Biotherapeutics Ltd, an oncolytic immunotherapy company, has won a grant for a 2.5 M€ (~$ 2.9M) project, entitled UNLEASHAD, from the European Commission EIC SME Instrument. The grant will be used to perform a Phase 1 clinical trial with the company’s lead drug, TILT-123. This adds up to TILT’s seed funding, bringing its total funding to 12M€ (~$14M).
About TILT Biotherapeutics
TILT Biotherapeutics is the leading company globally working in the area of enabling tumor T-cell therapy (including checkpoint antibodies) with oncolytic viruses. The company’s patented technology is uniquely based on human observations on the effect of oncolytic adenoviruses on the adaptive immune system. www.tiltbio.com
About the EIC SME Instrument
The EIC SME Instrument, part of Horizon 2020, is a public funding programme supporting innovation in small businesses. It funds market-creating disruptive innovation with significant growth potential and global ambitions. Only the most innovative companies get selected. https://ec.europa.eu/easme/en/sme-instrument
Unleashing the curative potential of cancer immunotherapy - project kick-off in July 2018
The objective of the project is to generate a clinical proof-of-concept for the company’s lead product, TILT-123, given with anti-PD1 therapy in metastatic melanoma and other advanced solid tumors. This project will last in total about two years and allow the company to confirm safety in human for TILT-123 with anti-PD1 treatment as well as to generate mechanism of action data. Eventually, treatment responses could be improved in currently incurable anti-PD1 refractory patients – a minority of solid tumors respond to single agent anti-PD1 therapy. From the business perspective, this project allows the company to mature into a stage from where its further development could be privately funded or supported by a pharmaceutical company.
As stated by TILT’s founder/CEO Akseli Hemminki, “We are proud to have been recognized by EIC as one of the most promising small companies in Europe. The funding rate in this cut-off was only 4%, which provides strong external validation on TILT technology. The grant allows us to initiate a clinically highly relevant trial. Preclinical data suggests we may be able to cure patients currently incurable. ” Professor Hemminki and colleagues have published nearly 300 scientific papers and treated over 300 patients with different oncolytic adenoviruses.
Supported by Finnish investors, seeking to raise Series A and establish partnerships with pharma
TILT’s current investors include Lifeline Ventures, Business Finland, European Commission, and business angels. "The grant won serves as an additional seal of excellence for the company, its business potential, and new partners" says Timo Ahopelto, one of the founders of Lifeline Ventures, who continues to invest in the company.