Utrecht, Paris- February 2022 – ArgoBio and Oncode Institute have teamed up with Oncode Investigator Madelon Maurice, researcher and group leader at UMC Utrecht, to launch Laigo Bio, a new company in the emerging field of target protein degradation. The company has additionally secured funding from Oncode Bridge Fund and ArgoBio to further develop its proprietary pipeline of targeted immunotherapies SureTACsR. The SureTACsR technology platform is a novel approach in membrane protein degradation, applicable to a broad scope of disease applications. The primary focus lies in the area of oncology, but with parallel programs in neuro-inflammation and neuro degenerative diseases. In contrast to other small molecule approaches, this results in an efficient and sustained degradation of target receptors, potentially resulting in superior efficacy in the clinic than modalities currently being employed by other emerging protein degradation technologies.
Initially driven by Madelon Maurice, who will join as the Principal Investigator, Laigo Bio is gearing up for preclinical lead development in the coming months, generating proprietary biologics for a selection of targets to showcase its potential. Laigo Bio receives strong support from seasoned entrepreneurs Neill Moray Mackenzie at ArgoBio and Emil Pot at Oncode, who will prepare the company for a Series A investment round as it aims to initiate its first clinical studies in 2025. Dr. Neill Moray Mackenzie at ArgoBio is a veteran of the IO field and Mr Emil Pot is an IP & business development expert at Oncode with 25 years of experience in life sciences.
Chris De Jonghe, Valorization Director of Oncode Institute, said: “SureTACsRis building on the innovative ideas that Dr. Maurice has initially validated with the support of Oncode’s Technology Development Fund. With the foundation of Laigo Bio, another exciting step forward is made towards the translation of Dr. Maurice’s innovations into effective, and tailored therapies for cancer patients. We are thrilled to join forces with ArgoBio in this initial seed round and consider it as a token of great confidence in the potential of this platform technology.”
Madelon Maurice of the UMC Utrecht, said: “We are extremely happy that ArgoBio is supporting my long-standing research here at the UMC Utrecht on how to interfere with signalling alterations that drive oncogenesis and bringing a team of experienced scientists and entrepreneurs to help with its translation to the clinic.”
Dr. Neill Moray Mackenzie of ArgoBio, said: “This is exactly why we put ArgoBio together last year – to fund these early-stage opportunities. I am especially pleased that Madelon Maurice, a renowned KOL in the field, is leading this novel approach to protein degradation which has great potential to open up a completely new biology in the field of cancer therapy.”
Shobhit Dhawan of Oncode Bridge Fund, said: “Targeted protein degradation is an exciting space and has gained validation in clinical studies with many players now entering the field. One key differentiator here is sustained degradation of cell membrane bound proteins with a biologic, which is a very novel approach, and we believe holds a lot of promise in oncology and many neurological indications. We look forward to supporting Madelon, Neill and Emil in their journey at Laigo Bio.”