Lentitek Ltd (Lentitek), an Edinburgh-based company specializing in the development of innovative manufacturing technologies that facilitate cost-effective delivery of advanced cell and gene therapies, has announced the successful acquisition of £250,000 ($300,000 USD) in seed investment. The funds will be utilized to further advance Lentitek’s technology and initiate initial commercial trials. Founded in 2019 by Dr. Adam Inche, Lentitek focuses on resolving critical challenges within the manufacturing process of lentiviral vectors, a key component of advanced treatments like CAR-T cell therapy and gene therapies, which offer curative solutions for previously untreatable cancers and genetic conditions.
Dr. Adam Inche, CEO of Lentitek, stated, “The significant issue with these remarkable emerging therapies, which heavily rely on lentivirus, is the high cost of goods. The yields and quality of the virus are often low, resulting in a price tag of over $1 million per treatment, making it economically unfeasible for many individuals.” Dr. Inche further emphasized, “Lentitek has developed a unique manufacturing technology that has demonstrated substantial improvements in key quality metrics related to yield and potency, essential factors that need enhancement to reduce costs and enhance accessibility.”
The £250,000 ($300,000 USD) seed investment in Lentitek was led by Gabriel Investments Ltd (Gabriel-IS), a Glasgow-based investment syndicate specializing in early-stage Scottish companies. Co-investors included Apollo Informal Investment Ltd (Apollo) based in Edinburgh, Scottish Enterprise, and the University of Edinburgh. Gill MacAulay, Founder and Director of Gabriel-IS, expressed delight in leading the investment round and highlighted the importance of supporting innovative Scottish companies addressing major challenges in human health, which aligns with Lentitek’s mission. MacAulay added, “This investment takes Gabriel-IS’s total funds invested in innovative Scottish companies to over £2.1 million ($2.6 million USD), attracting a further £38 million ($47 million USD) of follow-on investment and making a significant contribution to the Scottish startup ecosystem.”
Michiel Smith, Gate Keeper at Apollo, commented, “Apollo is proud to participate in the seed investment round of Lentitek. We are excited to contribute to the improvement of the cost of goods model for these incredible therapies, with the hope of playing a part in improving survival rates for cancer patients.”
Kerry Sharp, Director of Entrepreneurship and Investment at Scottish Enterprise, highlighted their longstanding awareness of Lentitek’s pioneering work in the field of gene therapy and advanced cancer treatment, and expressed their commitment to investing in the high-growth-potential company. Sharp acknowledged the life-saving potential of Lentitek’s technologies in making cancer treatment more accessible, effective, and affordable on a global scale.
The investment will enable Lentitek to further refine and demonstrate its technology in CAR-T cell therapy, an innovative cancer treatment that uses lentivirus to reprogram the patient’s own immune T-cells to identify and eliminate cancer cells. Lentitek gained significant recognition for its technology in 2022, winning the prestigious £100,000 ($125,000 USD) Industrial Biotechnology Innovation prize at the Scottish Edge Awards.
Leif Anderson, Co-founder of Lentitek, concluded, “Cell and gene-based therapies have demonstrated their clinical potential, with many individuals enrolled in clinical trials over the past decade being alive today due to these remarkable treatments. However, manufacturing and delivery challenges remain significant barriers to adoption. With this investment, Lentitek will take a crucial step in addressing these critical issues and ensuring that these treatments are accessible to all in need.”
Enquiries can be directed to:
Dr. Adam Inche
CEO, Lentitek Ltd